I was doing some research on Deborah who was the lady who was a prophetess and judge way back before the Israelites had kings. I actually wanted to see if I could find out anything about her husband. The poor man only gets mentioned once. I suppose the mere fact that he is mentioned in the Bible already puts him into a hall of fame. How many people who lived more than 3000 years ago are actually still remembered today? His name is Lapidoth which means flame. There isn’t much written about him on any of the websites and commentaries I looked at but I found something very intersting about Deborah. In Judges 5 she and Barak sing a victory song. In verse 7 she praises herself by saying that village life had ceased until she arose. In the one commentary which was written by Jewish Rabbi’s they speculate that because of the pride she showed by praising herself, God took away the spirit of prophecy from her.
Now if that was the case I am very, very glad we don’t live in the time of the Old Testament. Those were tough times. Deborah sat under a palm tree and was the judge. People came from all over the place so that she could sort out their problems for them. Barak refused to lead the army to war if she didn’t go with him. What kind of a wimp was he? So Deborah goes to war with him but she tells him that because he needs a woman to hold his hand, so to speak, his enemy will be “sold into the hand of a woman.” And that’s how it happens, almost like the twist in a soap opera, Sisera flees, Jael tricks him into having a rest in her tent, and drives a tent peg through his temple! The stories told in Judges are hair raising and better than a lot of action movies I’ve watched. Coming back to Deborah, I would have thought that she had something to boast about and was perfectly justified in saying what she said.
Maybe being justified is not what its all about, and we love justifying ourselves. We love giving reasons for our actions and making it allright to have done something even when it really wasn’t allright at all. Pride is the root of a lot of trouble today. We are to proud to admit when we make a mistake; we don’t want people to think that we are less than perfect so we pretend. We would rather live fake lives and smile fake smiles than admit we are less than perfect and perfectly human. When people actually do say they have a problem it also gets blown totaly out of proportion by putting outrageous post on social media.
Let us not fall into the trap that Deborah fell into and try to praise ourselves and make us look better than we really are. Let us talk less and listen more, let us make time for each other, let us stop and chat and not always be in such a hurry. Let us try to put the needs of others before our own. Let us try to make the world a litlle bit better by not being too proud to ask for help and not too busy to offer a helping hand to someone in need. Let us use the time that we have been granted here on earth to make it a better place and who knows, maybe 3000 years from now someone will know your name.