Being on the Lookout and Moving Forward
 So he brought the people down to the water. And the LORD said to Gideon, “Every one who laps the water with his tongue, as a dog laps, you shall set by himself. Likewise, every one who kneels down to drink.”  And the number of those who lapped, putting their hands to their mouths, was 300 men, but all the rest of the people knelt down to drink water.  And the LORD said to Gideon, “With the 300 men who lapped I will save you and give the Midianites into your hand, and let all the others go every man to his home.”  So the people took provisions in their hands, and their trumpets. And he sent all the rest of Israel every man to his tent, but retained the 300 men. And the camp of Midian was below him in the valley.
God has already told Gideon that he has too many men. He sent away everyone that was afraid and everyone that wanted to go home and thousands left without shame. Now they are getting water from the river and the numbers are filtered out even more.
There are guys that stick their faces down into the water and drink, like from a water fountain, but more like a dog. There are other guys that lift up the water to their mouths, still able to watch and see what is going on. I heard once that this was obviously a strategic move. The men that stayed in a frame of mind that they were fighting a battle were the final ones that got to actually fight the battle. The ones that were along for the trip but didn’t keep watch went on home.
This is a lot like Jesus’ parable about the maidens keeping oil in their lamps. The ones that brought enough oil, prepared for a long night and kept watch were the ones that were able to go in with the bridegroom when he arrived.
In the midst of these real-life events, there is a parable playing out that the people that keep watch get to do the coolest things. Sure, all of those soldiers that went home scared or uninterested were still part of Israel, so don’t hear what I’m not saying. But the ones that were in the mindset of attacking Midian, the ones that were in the frame of mind to keep watch and be on the move in the Lord’s work, those were the ones that got to stay with Gideon.
As we pray today to be filled with the knowledge of God’s will, let’s be on the lookout to see it! Let’s show up with an umbrella when we pray for rain. Let’s be the people that not only pray for the knowledge of God’s will but then keep our eyes open for the lesson. God loves to have us on His team, and He’ll lead us.