Tuesday, May 12, 2015
Stop Trying To Do It All Yourself
2Sam. 21:15 The Philistines went to war again with Israel, and David went down together with his servants. They fought against the Philistines, and David grew weary. 16 Ishbi-benob, one of the descendants of the giants, whose spear weighed three hundred shekels of bronze, and who was fitted out with new weapons, said he would kill David. 17 But Abishai son of Zeruiah came to his aid, and attacked the Philistine and killed him. Then David’s men swore to him, “You shall not go out with us to battle any longer, so that you do not quench the lamp of Israel.”
David was one of the greatest warriors the world had ever seen and he had been the one who had killed the giant Goliath. This was his area of expertise — he knew how to fight and to kill giants. Suddenly, another giant, Ishbi-benob, was nearing, intent on killing David. But this time David was tired and weary. He had been leading for a number of years and was unable to do it all on his own.
Abishai, one of David’s men came to his aid. He stepped in and took care of the giant. Even though David was the one with the reputation of being a giant killer, this time, he needed help. Not only did Abishai take care of the giant, but all of David’s men gathered around him and helped him set some priorities. They needed David as the visionary leader. the one who could keep the lamp of Israel burning. David needed to heed their advice and no longer go out to battle because he couldn’t do it all himself!
I can’t imagine how hard it must have been for David to step back from being involved in everything. He had been a war hero. He had killed Goliath. But now, he needed to recognize where he was needed. No longer was he needed on the front lines as a soldier, but he needed the protection of his soldiers so that he could lead all the people to God!
Life’s journey is not static. We have to learn and make adjustments along the way. This includes the roles which we fulfill. This scripture is a great lesson in leadership. There is the temptation of a leader to try to do it all…especially when the things that need to be done are the things that we think we do well! Can you imagine how humbling it must have been for David to have someone else kill the giant?
To be servants in God’s kingdom we must be willing to make adjustments and not think that we have to do everything ourselves. We are all gifted for different roles and purposes and at times there will be shifts and adjustments. Just because God has gifted us at a particular time and moment for something doesn’t meant that will be what we do for the remainder of our lives. Sometimes we have to be willing to let go of something that God gave us for a particular time and let someone else do it! It’s not ours for a lifetime, it’s ours for the moment. That’s part of the journey.
David had to learn to adjust and live in this new moment of his life. I’m going to guess that there was some emotion involved. Much of his identity was in being a soldier. Staying home may have made him feel like he was weak, and yet he needed to live into this next stage of his life. Had he tried to do it all, he probably would have been killed — and then have been of no use to anyone.
Laying down things that have been a part of our identity and trusting God for the journey can be difficult. Lean into the new that lies ahead and be willing to let go and let others do what you may have done before. It’s not a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of trust in God alone!
Lord, please help me to trust in you step by step, moving forward, every day. Amen.