A Lesson in Action from Jael

I once had to prepare a presentation on women of the Bible, and I asked a friend and coworker for help, because I wanted to talk about someone other than the same women we’re used to hearing about. She introduced me to Jael. Up until then, I had never heard of her, which is unsurprising since her name is seldom mentioned. There isn’t much written about her, however, in the few Bible verses that mention Jael’s story, she’s the protagonist.

Who was Jael?

If you haven’t read her story before, I’ll summarize it for you (but please don’t let this stop you from reading it later to get all the details!) She appears on the scene in Judges 4 and 5, when Israel was in conflict with the Canaanites. Barak was the commander of Israel at the time, but he only agreed to go to war if Deborah (the prophetess) accompanied him and his army. God granted Israel the victory.

Sisera, the commander of the Canaanite army, ran away in the midst of the conflict and sought refuge in the house of Heber, with whom he had a peace pact. However, Heber wasn’t home, but his wife, Jael, was. When she saw Sisera coming to her tent, Jael invited him to come in and rest. She covered him with a blanket, and when he fell asleep, she drove a tent stake through his head and killed him. Jael put an end to the war and brought victory to the people of Israel, thus fulfilling the prophecy: “for the Lord will deliver Sisera into the hand of a woman,” Judges 4:9.

Jael acted

Today there’s a call for women to be women of action, and Jael provides an example of true and dignified action. To act is to recognize the power of a moment and not waste opportunities. When the enemy appeared at her doorstop, she didn’t hesitate with “what ifs”, she wasn’t afraid and didn’t look for excuses to not act, much to the contrary, with the resources she had, Jael seized the moment and manifested the right attitude.

Are you brave enough to act?

Have you ever stopped to think about how many times we pray, make our requests, God hears us and does His part, but we don’t do our part and the blessing “goes away”? Other times we cry out for deliverance, but we hope that a third party will deliver us, when in truth it is we who have the responsibility to eliminate the enemy, for the Lord has delivered the enemy into our hands. God is always ready to help us. He is powerful and can do everything, yet He will never do what is in our capacity to do.

To act at the right moment, we need discernment, and we will only have it if we search for discernment in God’s Word and by being in daily communion with Him. The wise man says, “Yes, cry out for discernment, and lift up your voice for understanding,” Proverbs 2: 3.

Like Jael, I hope that you will be a woman of attitude, who knows how to take advantage of the opportunities that arise in your life, always acting in the right moment according to the will of the Creator.

– Rizzia Daphne

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