My Gideon’s Fleece

It was the spring of 2007. I was going to graduate high school soon and college was just around the corner. Really, orientation was just a couple months away!

What was I going to do with my life? Where was I going to go to college? To me, this seemed like a very weighty question, on which hinged my entire life’s future. How could it be so hard to figure out? Why would God make it so illusive to one who so wanted to do His will?

The greatest difficulty affronting me was deciding between two choices of careers to follow. Would I pursue vocal performance? If so, I knew where I would attend. My voice teacher felt the most qualified vocal instructors presided at Simpson College and after the pleasant experience of the week-long music camp I had there the summer before, the great audition and campus visit, I was agreeably inclined to follow her wishes.

But, I had a great affinity toward foreign languages. They came so easy to me when I started studying them as a dual-enrolled home school student at our public high school. The possibility of becoming a linguist with the objective of translating the Bible into other languages seemed so exciting and fulfilling. The problem was, there really wasn’t a linguist degree in my state. Would I pursue foreign languages at a state university, or mission work at a private Christian college? So many questions.

The inner turmoil I experienced during those months really began taking their toll on me. The days seemed to slip away without me being any nearer to discerning God’s will for my future.

So, one night after crying out to God for His direction yet again, I asked Him for a Gideon’s fleece.

If you’re not familiar with the story of Gideon in the Bible it can be found in Judges chapter 6. Gideon wants to know if God really has chosen him to lead Israel to battle against their oppressors, the Midianites, and that God will really give them the victory. He asks God for a sign. He tells God that he would put a fleece (a piece of wool) outside at night and if the next morning the wool was wet with dew, but all the ground around it was dry, he would know God would deliver Israel using him.

The next morning Gideon found the wool wet and the ground completely dry.

“Of course!” thinks Gideon, “How stupid. It’s only natural that the wool would retain the moisture from the night’s dew longer than the ground under it.”

So, he asked God for another sign. This time, he asked for the fleece to be completely dry, while the ground was still wet with dew. The Bible says, “And God did so that night: for it was dry only upon the fleece and there was dew on all the ground.” So, Gideon had his assurance from God and he did go on to conquer their enemies.

I begged God to give me clear direction, as He had done for so many of His servants in the Bible.

“God,” I begged, “Please give me a sign. Tomorrow, let there be something in the mail from whatever college you want me to attend.”

I finally fell asleep in peace. The kind of peace that comes after a prayer prayed in faith, completely trusting in God to answer.

Now, anyone who is graduating, or has requested information about any college knows, that a graduating high-schooler gets tons. Of. Mail. Every day advertisements from all sorts of colleges fill your mailbox. By asking what I had, I was expecting ONE piece of mail from a college. The college God had chosen for me. It also meant that if it was from Simpson College – I would pursue vocal music. If it was from the private Bible college or the public university – I would pursue linguistics.

I’m not advocating that we always ask God for signs like this. The New Testament makes it clear that people did this with wrong motives to test God, and to test Jesus. (Matt. 12:39; Matt. 16:4, John 6:30; 1 Cor. 10:9). In this instance, I was asking God in faith for His direction and waited expectantly for Him to give it.

The next day the mail didn’t come until very late! The day was busy and it wasn’t until preparation for supper that I found the pile of mail on the dining room table. I almost held my breath. Flip. Flip. Flip. Flipping through the various credit card offers, internet ads, and more. Flip. Then, it was there. On the very bottom. It was an envelope from Simpson College. “So, God, this is it.” I whispered inside. I opened it expecting an advertisement of Simpson’s opportunities or a letter from the faculty expressing their hopes that I would join them. What the letter actually contained was a full-ride scholarship!!!! I was dumbfounded.

“Thank-you, God!”, my heart cried! I burst into the kitchen, tears starting to stream down my cheeks as I shared it with my parents and told them about my “fleece” the night before. God answered me, just as He had Gideon.


And, Simpson College was his plan for me. I look back with very fond memories at the wonderful and at times faith-challenging experiences I had there. While my graduate degree ended up taking a different turn than what I had initially expected, I have made life-long friendships, married my soul mate, and have a stronger faith as a result.

“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” 1 Cor. 2:9

How has God helped you in major life’s decision? I’d love to hear your stories in the comments below!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *