Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Man You Want in Your Corner- I Chronicles 12

What is it about warriors that so inspire me? I sat riveted as my wife and I recently watched Act of Valor at the movie theatre. I read over and over the biography of Joshua Chamberlain, Soul of the Lion. And a lot of my reading in the OT recently have been warriors in the Scripture.

I realize that as a football coach, I have 20 years of frontline experience watching competition and battles, and that interests me.

But something else is here... deeper.. and I fully believe it is this- a mighty warrior, the kind with deep convictions and character, is so....rare.

Mark Twain once quipped in Huckleberry Finn that the mass of men are cowards. And, sadly, I have found that to be true.

The remarkable part of I Chronicles 12 is not the mighty King David. The remarkable truth is that great things must be done by teams.

I LOVE verse 38- "All these, men of war, arrayed in battle order, came to Hebron with full intent to make David king over all Israel. Likewise, all the rest of Israel were of a single mind to make David King."

Wow oh wow! Every coach understands this great principle. Give me 30 boys united in one solitary purpose- so much so that they will sweat and bleed and sacrifice for some purpose greater than themselves- and they cannot be beaten!

This is so rare today...getting rarer by the day. Why?

We have become jaded...skeptical....highly opinionated.. and we are highly impressed with our opinion.
We are quick to tear down, quick to believe the worst, quick to pass along the dark rumor.
And everything I just wrote is the height of cowardice.

There is no business, no organization, no team, no church, no nation that can survive long term without the unity of purpose and the courage to fight and the character to persevere in the storm.

Don't ever be fooled by the short term success of the quick fix or the temporary glow of ill gotten gain... only time reveals the true champions.

And who do I want to go shoulder to shoulder with? I want men like these mighty men in chapter 12. Look at these descriptions:

Mighty men who help
skilled warriors- adaptable and flexible
faces like the faces of lions
swift as gazelles on the mountains
the least was a match for 100
the greatest a match for 1000
they go headfirst into tough conditions
put the enemy to flight
join their hearts to righteous purposes
rebuke adversaries
they strive for peace
they rely on God
all mighty men of valor
commanders in the army
they add to their number-building to a mighty army of God
mighty in valor (repeated 5 times)
they understand the times
seasoned troops (3 times)
ready for battle
arrayed in battle order
all bring provisions
they bring JOY to Israel.

The cool thing is that I get to work in an environment on a daily basis where I am surrounded by these types of people. I am a part of one great organization- these are my type of men and women.

I am coaching with these types of men.

I watched workouts today with these types of players.

Not to say it is perfect... but the mindset is rare..... very rare.

Now for the next step... we want to usher in our King. We want to stand firm and win the spiritual battles.

What if I paraphrased verse 38 like this:

"All these, godly people of war, arrayed in battle order, came to Birmingham with full intent to make Jesus king over all America. Likewise, all the rest of Alabama were of a single mind to make Jesus King over all the world."

I know this is superfluous in the fact that JESUS IS KING- but what kind of army could we build if the gospel really got going.

We could join Bubba Watson... praising his savior after the Masters.
Tim Tebow... praising God after a playoff win.

We could join Franklin Graham, Chuck Norris, Mike Huckleby,  Michael Reagan, Dawson McAlister, Deborah Norville, Bobby Bowden, Joe Gibbs, Darryl Walrtrip, Kurt Warner, John Smoltz, Truett Cathy, Steven Curtis Chapman, Alan Keyes, thousands of pastors and missionaries and laypeople.....

Never retreat and never be discouraged... the gospel is still on the move!

And how do you join in?

Trust Jesus as Savior and Lord
Fight for your marriage ( LOVE that wife)
Disciple your children
Read the Word
Worship in a Bible believing church
Share the gospel
Pray and serve
Stand for truth and justice
Show mercy

What if we did that .... today.. with fire and courage!

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