Monthly Archives: October 2011

11. Glorify God

Last week we saw how King Saul didn't even recognize who David was, even though David had been playing the harp for him and helping him to get rid of the distressing spirit tormenting him. And we learned from this lesson that we should continue to do good, even though people might not even recognize our efforts. But God honors us, as He did David.

After defeating Goliath Saul didn't want David to go home anymore. He wanted David to stay with him. David met Saul's son, Jonathan, and they became the best of friends. They loved one another with a true brotherly love. Jonathan even took off his own robe and armor and gave it to David. Jonathan could see the work of the Lord in David.

The Bible also tells us that everywhere David went he was:

"…accepted in the sight of all the people and also in the sight of Saul's servants." 1 Samuel 18:5

God gave David favor from all sides. He gave him favor inside the royal family, outside with the people of the Kingdom as well as inside the palace with the King's servants. Everywhere he went he received favor. But what stood out for me was that the Bible tells us that David behaved wisely. This is wonderful to read.

David was still very young. Suddenly he became a national hero. He became someone the whole army looked up to. He was asked to come and live within the palace and even there the King's son gave him his robe and armor. All the people loved him. Plus he knew that he had been secretly anointed by Samuel to be the next king of Israel. David could easily have had all of this go to his head. He could easily have thought that he had 'arrived' and that he was now superior to others. He could have become proud and forgotten all that the Lord had done for him.

Yet, none of this happened. The Bible says that he behaved wisely. We can learn from that. We can also so easily become proud of our achievements. We can easily find our solace in it. We can start believing that we have earned the position that we are in at work, that we are healthy because we eat right and we exercise, that our children excel all because of all the extra lessons we paid for them to take, that we reach new heights in sport all because we train so hard and so I can go on. Yes we must work hard, yes we should eat right and exercise, but at the end of the day Who gives us the health, the passion, the energy, the talent and the IQ to do all of this?

We should never become proud of our achievements and think that we have arrived. God should be honored and praised through it all. He gave us talents, health, a high IQ etc., so that we can excel in order for people to notice us giving our testimony of Him. He wants His children to excel in order to draw others closer to Him as well. He doesn't want us to excel simply to glorify our own efforts.

Think about this. You will see that it is true in so many aspects of our lives. Our egos get in the way so many times. Jesus came so that we can crucify our ego and that we can now live fully in the spiritual realm glorifying God and leading others to Him. Success is only there because God ordained it to be so. We can and should do our best, but the honor is always His. And He in turn honors that, as we will see further in the life of David.

Father, thank you for providing us with everything that we need to succeed. We glorify You and we honor You. Without You we won't even be able to get out of bed. Thank you so much for the honor of serving You. Please grant us the wisdom to live according to Your plan for our lives and to testify wherever You want us to. Amen

10. Do good anyway

David brought about a big victory for the Israelites against the Philistines by defeating Goliath. As we saw last week the Philistines didn't keep their end of the bargain to become the slaves of Israel. They decided to flee instead and God helped the Israelites to defeat the Philistines and to be enriched through plundering their tents.

It was during this process that something happened that was quite funny to me. King Saul turned to his commander of the army, Abner, and asked concerning David:

"Abner, whose son is this youth?" 1 Samuel 17:55

And then later he summoned David and asked him "Whose son are you young man?" 1 Samuel 17:58

I find his questions amusing. It was as if Saul didn't know who David was. Yet only one chapter back Saul listened to the advice of his servants and sent for David to come and play the harp for him. His servants then told him that this was David, the son of Jesse. Saul even wrote a letter to Jesse asking him to send David to him. And we saw how Saul was pleased with David and how the distressing spirit left as David played to him.

And yet after all that, Saul is acting as if he doesn't know David at all. There could be two possible reasons for it. First of all the distressing spirit might be interfering with Saul's memory, in other words Saul might not have clarity of mind anymore. Or secondly, Saul might have never really looked at David whilst playing the harp for him. Maybe he thought of himself so much higher in ranking than David that he didn't truly notice him, even though the music brought 'ointment' for his disturbed soul. We will never know. But the fact is Saul didn't even recognize David here.

Today we might also have done a lot of good to someone who doesn't even recognize all our efforts. We might be helping behind the scenes and never even receive a 'thank you'. We might be overlooked when it comes to promotion or when bonuses are distributed. But the fact of the matter is that God sees our efforts and will reward us accordingly. He sees all that we do and He is pleased with His sons and daughters. Never give up doing good. Never expect to receive an earthly 'thank you' or reward for all the good that you do, yet continue doing good anyway. God is the One we want to be proud of us. This made me think of a poem by Mother Teresa of Calcutta. It has truly blessed me and I hope it will mean something to you today:

People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered; forgive them anyway

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives; be kind anyway

If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies; succeed anyway

If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you; be frank and honest anyway

What you spend years building, someone may destroy overnight; build anyway

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous; be happy anyway

The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow, do good anyway

Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough; give the world the best you've got anyway

You see in the final analysis, it is all between you and God; it was never between you and them anyway.

Father, we are so blessed to know that this life is between us and You. We are not in competition with one another, but we are here to glorify You and You alone and to build Your Kingdom. Thank you for the opportunity to be able to do that. We love You. Amen

9. Stand up and be counted

David brought a big victory for Israel when he defeated Goliath. He trusted in God inexplicitly and through His grace David killed Goliath. The Philistines couldn't believe it when they saw their hero fall. They ran off the moment they saw it. They didn't honor their agreement. Do you remember their agreement? Goliath proclaimed that if someone were to kill him, they would be the servants of Israel, but if he killed the one coming against him, Israel would be their servants. Now of course they never in their wildest dreams thought that someone will actually kill Goliath and therefore they made this silly agreement. But the moment the unthinkable happened they ditched the agreement and fled.

Hasn't this happened many times to us as well? Either we make silly promises because we think it will never happen, or people we enter into agreement with make a U-turn the moment things don't go their way. I think the lesson here is that we should think carefully before we enter into an agreement with anyone. We should be prepared to honor that agreement even if things do not go our way.

But on the other hand, if we acted honorably, and really kept to our side of the bargain and the other party decides not to honor it, we can be certain that God will be with us and help us. He certainly was with the Israelites. The moment Goliath was defeated the Philistines ran with the Israelites in hot pursuit:

"Now the men of Israel and Judah arose and shouted, and pursued the Philistines as far as the entrance of the valley and to the gates of Ekron. And the wounded of the Philistines fell along the road to Shaaraim, even as far as Gath and Ekron. Then the children of Israel returned from chasing the Philistines, and they plundered their tents." 1 Samuel 17:52, 53

God helped the Israelites in a mighty way. Just a few verses back they were trembling, scared to death, but this one heroic act of David spurred them on and they solidly defeated their enemy. God didn't take kindly to the fact that the Philistines didn't honor their part of the agreement and He helped the Israelites to not only defeat them, but to be enriched as well by taking all the Philistines had. God is faithful and will help His people. And the same is true today. If you are honest in your business and personal dealings, God will fight for you and help you to be even better off than you would have been if the other party had honored their part of the bargain.

One man's absolute trust in God spurred on a whole nation and saved them from certain bloodshed. It is wonderful to see what one man's faith can do. Today also we should never think that we cannot make a difference on our own. We truly can. Our faith and trust in God can influence more than we think and can lead to supernatural events happening. One act of absolute faith can snowball and change a whole nation. Think about that the next time you are led by His Spirit to do something. You have the ability to influence a nation. God has given it to you. You only need to stand up and be counted.

Father thank you that we can know that You will always fight for us. We look up to You and we praise You! Give us the courage to take a stand for You and to proclaim our faith for all to see. We want people to see You in us. All glory on High! Amen

8. Proclaim His Word

Last week we saw that David went just as he was to face Goliath. He didn't take any extra precautions and he didn't take the armor of Saul, he didn't want anything that he wasn't used to. He trusted God without wavering. David walked up to Goliath with only five smooth stones in his shepherd bag as well as his staff in his hand. He was ready to face the giant.

Now as we might suspect, the giant immediately taunted David. He tried to make him lose his nerve. He talked down at David and really scorned him. But it is wonderful to see that it didn't faze David in the least. In fact when Goliath swore by his gods, it spurred David on even more. David then replied exalting God and giving all honor to Him.

"I come to you in the Name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you…..for the battle is the Lord's and He will give you into our hands." 1 Samuel 17:45, 46, 47b

Isn't it wonderful? David proclaimed no glory for himself; he honored God all the way! He gave all glory to Him Who he knew would deliver him. I love it. David also didn't have the slightest doubt that God would not help him. He trusted Him wholly and without wavering. And God honored that. David threw one stone at Goliath and it struck his forehead and he fell down dead. David ran over and didn't take any chances. He took the sword of Goliath and cut off his head with his own sword. Victory which David proclaimed orally became a reality.

We also need to proclaim our victory orally. We need to speak out loud what is true of us according to the Bible. We did a whole series on Kingdom living and what is now true of us today because we belong to Christ, so I am not going to go into detail right now. But we need to proclaim who we are. The Bible tells us that we are more than conquerors through Him that gives us the strength. We are royalty, a priesthood serving God, we are His children, royal heirs to the Kingdom, His bride and so I can go on. We need to proclaim that and stand up in who we truly are. Then the enemy cannot do anything against us. You see if your mind is filled with the Word of God, the energy of His Word will shine forth and change this world according to what His Word proclaims.

All your thoughts are energy. It has been proven scientifically, I cannot go into detail here, but what you think, you eventually say and what you say eventually becomes your reality. It really does. That is why God's Word says, as a man thinks, so he becomes (Proverbs 23:7). It is therefore pivotal what goes on inside your thoughts. That is why God says we need to renew our minds (Romans 12:2). We need to start thinking as He does and when we do, His power starts to work, and His energy starts to flow through us and His reality for us manifests.

David had zero doubts in his mind that God will help him, literally nothing. And that is why he could defeat his giant. We need to have that total conviction too. And we have an even bigger advantage, we have His Spirit inside of us, helping us each step of the way.

Start reading His Word, start believing what is true of you, start proclaiming it, start renewing your thoughts and then see how you start living it. A new day would dawn for you! Rejoice. God is for you, who can ever be against you?!

Father thank you for Your precious Word. Thank you that we can take all of it to heart and believe what it is true of us. We are so grateful. Thank you for Your good plans for our lives and that You are right there beside us, leading the way as our Lion of Judah. Hallelujah, all the giants will fall. Amen

7. Just be yourself

Last week we learned that we shouldn't be swayed by the downgrading comments of other people, but we should listen to God's voice only and follow Him. This is exactly what David did. He didn't listen to the insulting words of his brother, but continued with what he felt in his heart. David continued questioning about Goliath. So much so, that Saul heard of it and sent for him. David declared that Saul shouldn't be afraid any longer; he will go and fight the Philistine. And immediately Saul also tried to discourage him, by saying that he was too young and not an experienced fighter like Goliath. But still David wouldn't listen. God placed this conviction in his heart and he wasn't going to be swayed. He explained to Saul how God has helped him to kill both a lion and a bear who tried to attack his sheep. And what I love about David's response is his absolute conviction that God will help him:

"The Lord, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." 1 Samuel 17:37

I love it! There is absolutely no wavering in his faith. There is no maybe God will help, or maybe He won't. He was absolutely convinced that He would and God honored that.

Saul could see that David was not backing down so he agreed that he could go. He also clothed David with his armor and he put a bronze helmet on his head and clothed him with a coat of mail. But when David tried to walk he couldn't. It was too heavy for him and didn't fit him at all. He immediately took it off and simply took his staff and five smooth stones from the brook.

This was interesting to me. What Saul was saying in effect was:

"If I had the guts to do this, I would have worn this. So please take it, hopefully it will help you."

Luckily David had the sense to decline. We cannot win the battles wearing someone else's armor. God has given each of us our own armor to wear. We should honor and respect that. We shouldn't try to be like someone else. God made us so unique and special. He has given us all the tools that we need to succeed. We shouldn't yearn for someone else's.

Sometimes people really mean well, they really want to help us, but we must still do things our own unique way. David would never have succeeded wearing Saul's armor. He would have stumbled and it would have been the end of him. He didn't try and spare Saul's feelings. No, he declined the armor and trusted God completely to help him as He had done in the past. His raw courage inspired a whole army. He demonstrated to all, that out of his own strength it was impossible to defeat Goliath, but with God all things are possible! Hallelujah!

Just be yourself. Rejoice in the victories that God has given to you in the past and be confident that He will be with you in the future too. Just walk as the royalty that you are. Do not imitate others and test ALL advice, even those well-meaning advices, against God's will for your life. Then go out, be yourself and defeat the enemy.

Thank you for who I am Lord. Thank you that You made me unique and special, ready to conquer any enemy with Your help. I praise You that I am more than a conqueror because Jesus gave me the strength! Hallelujah, I give You all the honor and glory! Amen

 

6. Listen only to God's Voice

Last week we learned that we should focus on how big our God is and not how big our giants are. He is mighty to save and as we look up at Him at all times, our giants will simply pale in comparison. And that is the start of victory!

Okay, so last week we saw that Goliath came every day and challenged the forces of Israel. And Saul and his entire army were greatly afraid. And this was where David entered the scene.

He was still at home tending the sheep, and not at the battle field. Three of his older brothers were there. So David's father, Jesse, sent David to take dried grain and ten loaves to his brothers, as well as ten cheeses for the captain of their thousands. Jesse also wanted news from them and wanted to know how they were doing. So David went and as he arrived at the battle field he left the supplies with the supply keeper and joined his brothers. There he also saw Goliath and heard what he said. He also heard about the reward for the person who killed Goliath. David started asking around and notice how his brother, Eliab, reacted:

"Why did you come down here? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your pride and the insolence of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle." 1 Samuel 17:28

And notice how David reacts:

"What have I done now?" 1 Samuel 17:29

It was clear from this interaction that there was not a lot of love lost between the brothers. Eliab wanted to degrade David. He knew that he was anointed to be king and yet he wanted to humiliate him. Notice the word 'few' that he uses. He wanted to degrade the work that David was doing. He wanted him to think he was worth nothing. And the way David reacted suggests that this was not the first time that his brother looked down on him and scoffed at him.

But did this stop David? No. The Bible says he continued asking about Goliath. So much so that Saul heard of it and sent for him.

Now we can learn from this. When God places something on our hearts, we shouldn't stop even if people ridicule us and call us names. When we have the conviction to do something, we must continue with it and not allow other people's opinions to sway us. This made me think of Noah as well. He was ridiculed and scoffed at on a daily basis for years. Yet he had the conviction to build the ark and he continued to do so and his act of obedience saved his and his family's lives.

If you know in your heart that you must do something, you must do it. Do not allow the fickle opinions of others to sway you. Stand up and continue with what God has told you to do. At the end of the day, only His opinion matters and you would have obtained a big victory for His Kingdom. People are so easily influenced; do not allow that to happen to you. You have His Spirit inside of you and you can hear His voice. Follow that voice and let all other voices disappear. Can you imagine if David allowed his brother to sway him with his comments? He would never have become king. No, David knew who he was in God and he hated the fact that Goliath was defying his mighty, living God. He stood up for God and for what is right and the rest is history.

Father, help us to close our ears to the dooming voices of others. Speak to us loud and clear. We want to follow You and You only. You are our Lord and King, glory on high! Amen

5. Do not fear the giants

Last term we learned that we must do our best on the journey to where God is leading us. He will use the experience that we gained on our life's journey to glorify His Name and to build His Kingdom.

And one of the ways that God helped David to gain even more experience was with his famous encounter with Goliath. This encounter was recorded right after stating that David was playing the harp for Saul. This displays that God helped David to learn how to be a king inside the castle and how to be a king on the outside, fighting wars.

Now most of you know this story off by heart. But just to shortly recap. The Philistines gathered their armies together for battle against the Israelites. The armies stood facing one another, each on a mountain with a valley between them. Then every day Goliath, a giant 3metres tall, will come and challenge the Israelite army:

"Choose a man for yourselves, and let him come down to me. If he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we will be your servants. But if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall be our servants and serve us." 1 Samuel 17:9

And the Bible records the reaction of Saul and the Israelites:

"When Saul and all of Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid." 1 Samuel 17:11

They were greatly afraid. They lost sight of the mighty God that they serve and were greatly afraid of a 'giant' of 3metres tall. Against their God Goliath was puny, a small ant, but when they lost sight of God, and how mighty and how great He was, Goliath was a giant to them.

Doesn't this happen to us as well? I have seen myself faced with many giants and I was greatly afraid of them. I looked at them from an earthly perspective and I didn't know how I was going to defeat them. And I must be honest, I prayed over all these situations, but somehow I still lost sight of how awesome, big and great our God was. It was only when God tugged at my heart strings and showed me how great, loving and absolutely sovereign He is that I obtained perspective again. It was then that the giant that I faced started to fade in comparison. Time spent with Him, growing by feeding on His Word, made me stronger and stronger, growing bit by bit into the fullness of Christ as the Bible urges us to. Jesus opened up the way for us to become like Him on earth, because He lives in us and through us! And when we realize the full impact of Him living IN us, we can face any giant and they will need to retreat!

Poor Saul and the Israeli army didn't have His mighty Spirit living in them as we do. We have a huge advantage over them and we need to start using it. Jesus came to open up the way for us to access unlimited power. But He is not going to force it on us, we need to use it.

What giants are you facing today? See how God is mightier than them all, see how powerful He is, how big, how Almighty and then look again at your giant with different eyes. We are more than conquerors through Jesus that gives us the strength we need! No giant should taunt us! We are children of the Most High God.

Thank you Father that You are almighty, big, powerful and without equal. Thank you that You are by our side!! We praise You and glorify Your mighty Name! Thank you that we never need to fear giants in our lives. Amen

4. Do your best right where you are

Last week we saw how God looks totally different than us. He looks at the heart, a willingness to serve Him and to follow Him wholeheartedly!

Samuel anointed David in front of his brothers and the Word clearly states that:

"…the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward." 1 Samuel 16:13

And the very next verse the opposite was displayed:

"But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul and a distressing spirit from the Lord troubled him." 1 Samuel 16:14

God came upon David and left Saul. Fortunately this cannot happen to us today, as His Holy Spirit has come mightily to this earth and into our hearts to stay. But here in the Old Testament, God placed His Spirit upon His leaders, and in His eyes David was the leader now.

This happened instantaneously as David was anointed. Then Saul's servants (I believe by the hand of the Lord) suggested that Saul get someone to play harp for him in order to calm him down and have the distressing spirit depart. And of course they suggested that he gets David to play the harp for him. David came and the Bible tells us that Saul loved him greatly and that when David played the harp:

"And so it was, whenever the spirit from God was upon Saul, that David would take a harp and play it with his hand. Then Saul would become refreshed and well, and the distressing spirit would depart from him." 1 Samuel 16:23

God used David to help Saul, even though Saul didn't truly have a heart for God. And how wonderful that God brought David right into the throne room of the King. And from there he could learn all the ways of a king. He could learn how the household works, how the army functioned, how the king conducts himself, how to run a kingdom. He could learn all of that whilst he was still too young to be king himself. God opened the way for him.

Today also God prepares us for what lies ahead. Sometimes we wonder how on earth is what I am doing now going to help me later? But when we walk on the pathway God ordained for us, everything will work out for our good. All the experience that we obtain will help us later in our lives. It will assist us to be better than what we would have been if we had rushed into things.

I can't help but wonder what went on inside of David's head. He was anointed to be king and yet he didn't know when or how that was going to happen. And suddenly he is summoned to play harp for the king. I really wonder what he must have thought. But what I can gather from the Word, his actions were exemplary. Even though he was not yet king as he was anointed to be, he did his work, playing the harp, to the best of his ability. He didn't question God, but performed the task at hand to his utmost best.

We can learn from that. We don't know the future and what lies ahead, but we can do the best we can right there where we are now, trusting that God knows best. We must trust His timing. He will lead and guide us to where we need to be. And then we can use the experience we obtained whilst in the 'waiting room'. Do your best where you are, do not be grumpy, complaining to God. Rather accept your circumstances, with your hope focused on God, doing your best and listening to Him for guidance. Then you cannot go wrong and your experience gained will stand you in good stead in the end.

Father we love Your plan for our lives. We want to hear Your voice loud and clear as to the way forward. Please lead us with Your divine guidance. We know that You know best. Thank you for the opportunity to gain experience, we will do our best. Amen

3. Your David moment

Last week we saw that God wants 100% commitment to Him. King Saul, the first king of Israel was unfortunately not 100% committed to God and therefore God chose another king for Israel. He then sent Samuel to go to Bethlehem and to anoint a new king for Him there. God gave him specific instructions saying that he should have a sacrifice there and that he should invite Jesse and his sons. Samuel was 100% obedient and he went and followed God's instructions.

Jesse and his sons came and Samuel looked at each of them. His first reaction was that Eliab must be the new chosen king. But God's reaction is so beautiful to me:

"Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart." 1 Samuel 16:7

God looks so differently than us, and yet today we can also look as He does, because we have the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16). We simply need to let go of our ego who wants to look out of the world's glasses and take a hold of His Spirit and see as He sees!

Samuel stayed obedient and asked that Jesse call his other sons too. One by one they walked past, but God didn't choose any of them. It was only when Samuel asked whether all of Jesse's sons were there that Jesse actually thought of David. David was out tending the sheep and his father didn't even think to invite him. But when Samuel asked that he be sent, he came and was anointed the moment he walked in, right there in front of his brothers and father. Can you imagine how shocked Jesse and his sons must have been? David was the youngest and in their eyes the least likely to be anointed and yet this was what happened.

Today we must realize that God works in wonderful ways. He doesn't look at this world as most of us do. He looks at the heart and He sees potential. Can you imagine how David must have felt? He wasn't even invited to this party. He was looked down upon because he was the youngest and yet he was the one being anointed.

Maybe you also feel like David sometimes. You might feel that you are not as good-looking as the rest, or you don't have the same talents that the others have or you are always last to receive any promotion or any acclaim. You might feel as if God has overlooked you when it came to gifts and that God is 'talking' to everyone except you. You might feel as if you are 'only looking after the sheep' and not doing something important for God. But that is where you have it wrong. God doesn't look that way. He looks at our willingness, our hearts dedicated to Him, and once He sees that, your David moment will come. God is so pleased when He sees a heart willing to serve Him. He is so pleased when He sees that we want to obey Him wholeheartedly. He will honor that. He will use you. Maybe not with worldly acclaim accompanying it, but He will use you mightily for His Kingdom.

Just be patient. Be obedient in the small things that God has placed on your path right now. Rejoice in what He wants you to do right now, and do it to the best of your ability. God sees your heart and before long your David moment will come. He will honor you and lift you unto a new plain of influence. Once again not as you would think in the world, but on a spiritual level second to none. Look forward to it whilst 'tending your sheep'. Your time will come.

Father we look forward to our David moment. Thank you that we can know that You know what is best for us and what will work for us. We trust You inexplicitly with our lives and we want to be obedient right there where we are. Show us the way Lord! In Jesus' Name. Amen

 

2. Be 100% obedient

Today we are officially starting with our series on David. Now to start off I would just like to give a little bit of background as to where we are in the wonderful Biblical account of God's people.

The Israelites under the leadership of Joshua was led into the Promised Land. They drove out the inhabitants of the land, but unfortunately true to human nature, they weren't 100% obedient to God. They left a few of the inhabitants and didn't drive them all out. These people became a thorn in their sides and led them away from God. God tried to turn their hearts towards Him again, but they wouldn't listen. Then He allowed armies of the inhabitants that they didn't drive out to conquer them. They then cried out to God and time and again He sent Judges to rescue them. This happened so many times. It is actually a very sad tale to read.

Then the last judge to rule over them was Samuel. And when he grew older the people didn't like his sons, they didn't have the same integrity and love for God as Samuel himself. So they demanded to have a king. Samuel didn't want to anoint them a king, because he knew that God was their King looking after them, but they wouldn't listen. At the end God told Samuel to go forth even though they were rejecting Him as their King. He gave them last warnings about what a king would do to them, but they wouldn't listen. They still demanded a king. So God led Samuel to anoint Saul as their first king. He was a handsome man, standing head and shoulders above everyone else. But despite that, he had a low self-image and this cost him in the end.

Saul started out well and God was with him. But he wasn't 100% committed to God. He followed Him 90% of the way, because the moment the people pressured him, he gave in to their demands and forsook the word of the Lord. He deviated by 10% and that cost him his kingship. I am not going to go into detail on that right now. The point is he wanted to follow God, but he wanted to please the people as well due to his low self-image. He compromised and God couldn't honor that. So God then sent Samuel to anoint a new king for Israel, namely David. It took a long while for David to actually become king after he was anointed, and during that time of waiting Saul still reigned. We will have a look at that.

For now I want us to learn from the history of Israel. They obeyed God in driving out the inhabitants, but they weren't 100% obedient and left some of them to live. Saul also weren't 100% obedient. He followed the voice of the Lord, but only to a point and then he deviated just a little bit and that cost him. From these examples I think it is fair to say that God wants our 100% commitment. He wants us sold out for Him. He wants us to follow Him 100%. He doesn't like lukewarm commitment. He clearly states in Revelation 3:16 that He will spew out of His mouth those that are lukewarm. God wants us on fire for Him, living for Him and proclaiming His Name for all to hear.

I have heard people looking at 100% on fire Christians and calling them 'too radical', 'going too far with their religion', but who do you want to be obedient to? Jesus has promised us so many things. He lives within us fully, as we are one Spirit with Him. But we grieve the Holy Spirit when we do not speak up for Him, when we do not follow His Voice speaking to us, when we decide to rather continue with the practices of our ungodly friends, when we treat Him as our 'ticket to heaven' and that is it. Jesus wants to manifest through us to a lost world with His grace, He wants to use our hands and feet in this world. But He can only fully manifest when we are 100% sold out to Him, when we surrender and allow Him full access.

I know all Christians want Jesus to really manifest through them and bring physical and spiritual healing to all around and to hear His voice loud and clear. All of them want that, but are they prepared to really give up this world and follow Him?

Jesus simply want us to surrender, to really and truly give our lives to Him. Many a times people confess Jesus as their Savior, but they never give their hearts wholly and truly to Him. That is all that He wants. Hearts beating for Him and for who He is. Come on, be 100% sold out to Jesus. Then you will start seeing miracles manifesting to the glory of His Name.

Jesus we love You. We adore You. We want to surrender our will to You 100%. Your ways and not our ways. Lead us Lord Jesus unto Your pathways for our lives and into deeper understanding. We want to honor You in all that we do. We love You. Amen