Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Needed: Risk Takers

Are you a risk taker? The question crossed my mind as I was reading in 1 Chronicles some of king David's battles. God was very good to him and David knew it. He knew that the battle was not his but the Lord's and as he dealt with his enemy neighbours David did not doubt the faithfulness of God. David knew he was nothing but a shepherd boy whom God had taken from the pasture and made king over God's nation. David did nothing to deserve it. He wasn't educated or qualified in any manner except one; he loved God with all his heart.

As I read some of the various battles I could imagine the kingdom of Israel growing. David had quite a lot of land and a diverse people to govern but it seemed David was destined to always be at war. Even when he tried to be a kind king he ended up in a war.

The Ammonite king had died and David sent officials to comfort the new king but the new king was advised that David's officials had come to spy. The new king decided to teach David a lesson and shamed the officials. Not a great move and when he realized what he had done, he hired some armies from other places. It made for a sizable force, larger than Israel's army. So why would David risk it? Why take the chance? Why not be satisfied with what Israel had accomplished and leave it at that? Because David knew better.

It was always God who was giving the victory no matter the size of the opposition and even David's commanders understood this. As the commander and his brother were going into the battle, the commander stated:

Be brave and fight hard to protect our people and the towns of our Lord God. I pray he will do whatever pleases him. (1 Chronicles 19:13)

They won of course.

What is the one thing that we know for sure that our Father desires? That everyone would be saved. Jesus did not say he came to save a select few but instead whoever makes the choice to believe him. So just like David heading into battle, we can be confident that our Father wants us to win. He wants us to be engaged in the fight for lost souls. Is it worth the risk of sticking our necks out and testifying about Jesus? It certainly is and you will be surprised who is receptive to your testimony.

Some may sit on the bus and wonder if they should speak to the person next to them and decide not to because the person might not think well of them. Some don't speak to their customers afraid they may damage their business. There are all kinds of levels of risk when it comes to "sticking our neck out" for Jesus. But if it is the Father's will that everyone would be saved, how can be not be engaged in the battle?

The Kingdom is not about the status qua. It isn't about reaching a certain level and maintaining. It is about seeding what we have been entrusted with so that it will grow. The Kingdom is about growth and there is nothing wrong with that because it is the Father's will. What's wrong is when we are not growing, increasing, taking risks, walking in faith, trusting, obeying, sharing our testimony with everyone who will listen.

You can't win if you don't fight. You can't grow if you are not going forward. You can't be faithful to the Father's will if you are content to maintain. What some would call risk Jesus calls faith and he is the one who provides the faith that is needed but we have to trust him for it.

Am I a risk taker? Maybe not as much as I would like to be but I am determined to get there.

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