“And Jonathan said to his armor bearer, come up after me, for the Lord has given them into the hands of Israel.”—I Samuel 14:12b
Great victories demand great risks. Nobody ever won anything big or accomplished anything great without taking big risks. I have witnessed countless people, teams, and nations fall short of destiny, victory, and prosperity because they failed to risk. Their moment of opportunity was upon them but they lacked the thing they couldn’t do without—the willingness to risk . What does it take to risk big?
Saul’s son Jonathan was a risk taker. I Samuel 14 speaks of how he and his armor bearer singlehandedly brought defeat upon the Philistine Army. These marauding enemies were camped on a mountaintop opposite the valley position of the Israelites. They had raided, raped, and ravaged the Israelites for many months.
One young man of the Israelite Army saw his moment clearly and acted. Jonathan did three things that led to him risking all for the glory of God, his people, and his country:
1. He found his faith. “Come let us cross over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; perhaps the Lord will work for us.”—I Samuel 14:6. Faith is a free gift from God. Everybody has faith. When, where, and how you use it—those are the real issues. God is powerfully drawn to the faithful heart. If my heart is to risk for my God and my team, that in itself is a victory!
2. He made a decision and acted. “Jonathan climbed up on his hands and feet, with his armor bearer behind him.”—I Samuel 14:13. Once my faith is activated and I see my course, conviction rises up in me. I move from “I will” to “I must!” My life takes on a burning that cannot be quenched except in the intensity of battle. Others may feel sorry for their adversity and pain. I cannot. Others may fear embarrassment and failure. I cannot. Others may quit. I cannot.
3. He called out a comrade. “And his armor bearer said, ‘Do all that is in your heart for I am with you.”—I Samuel 14:7. If we will risk big, God will give big. The bigger the risk, the greater the resources He pours out for us. The moment you decide to act in faith, the moment you plunge in to the risk, that is the moment that God begins to turn in your direction all kinds of resources you never knew existed—confidence, teammates, unexpected circumstances.
Where in your life is God calling you to risk? “Perhaps the Lord will act on your behalf” but not before you take action. Pour it all out—all your talent, all your energy, all your focus and see if He will not meet you in a powerful and unexpected way!
Tue, October 4, 2011
by Bill Buckley