Smooth things over
“Then the people of Ephraim asked Gideon, “Why have you treated us this way? Why didn’t you send for us when you first went out to fight the Midianites?” And they argued heatedly with Gideon. But Gideon replied, “What have I accomplished compared to you?”
Judges 8:1-2 NLT
Gideon gives us a good lesson about what should be the attitude of a leader to criticism, especially when he is criticized regardless of what he has achieved.
God had just given to Gideon the victory over the Midianites who oppressed Israel. The people of Ephraim, instead of rejoicing for have been released, complained about Gideon because he had not taken into account for the battle, and apparently the complaining was not very diplomatic, but it was a very rough protest.
But Gideon did something to smooth things over; rather than self-justified Gideon highlighted the achievements of his accusers, and even considered it greater than its own triumphs.
How difficult is for us to recognize the virtues of others! And much more, recognize to those who instead of being happy with us, accuse us, attack us or complain to us. And what about recognizing the successes of others, even on our own success?
I do not think that Gideon was a flatterer, but I think he was very clear that in his role as leader, he should be a peacemaker, should look for unify and don’t separate, he knew that in times of crisis in which they lived, national unity was even about his personal glory.
© David García Licona – December 2013