Have you ever asked God why He called you? Maybe you feel inadequate or unqualified for the assignment. You may think that you are not fit for the role of leadership, that you don’t meet all the criteria, perhaps too young or too old, inexperienced, something damaged or this constant struggle in life and don’t feel quite ready. I am sure that David must have felt the same way in his walk. I am sure that he did not feel as qualified to do anything most days. But David did have the characteristics for great leadership even during the most agonizing, stressful and weakest points of his life.
1 Samuel 22: 1-5 states “David left Gath and escaped to the cave of Adullam. When his brothers and his father’s household heard about it, they went down to him there. All those that were in distress or in debt or discontented gathered around him; and he became their leader! About 400 men were with him. From there David went to Mizpah in Moab and said to the king of Moab “Would you let my father and mother come and stay with you until I learn what God will do for me? So he left them with the king of Moab and they stayed as long as David was in the stronghold. But the prophet Gad said to David “Do not stay in the stronghold. Go into the land of Judah.” So David left and went to the forest of Hereth.”
David was in distress running from Saul who was trying to kill him. Then 400 men that were in the same condition as David gathered around him and he became their leader. They were all in distress. The city was in chaos and at war. David finds himself among men that were just as troubled as him as a start to his leadership. Only a man in distress could understand how to handle others going through the same thing. He also had no idea what to do. He told the king of Moab “please watch my parents until I find out what to do?” He was leaning on God to work in this situation.
Why didn’t the men want to follow a king like Saul? Because Saul was not a fighter, only a man with a title. David was obedient to God. He surrendered to a life of battle until he became a champion for God. Saul was not known to have conquered as much as David in such a short span of time. He was not in obedience to God and didn’t complete any of the tasks that were required of him. He followed his own ways and that led to his end.
People do not want to walk with a leader that has a pretense of victory. They want a leader to guide them and show them how to win. There are so many pastors and too few shepherds that actually smell like or look like their own sheep. There are pastors that preach the word of God and those that LIVE the word of God. There are leaders that attract followers and leaders that attract other leaders. David was that man, even when he had no idea what would happen next.
In Psalm 142, David writes, “I cry aloud to the Lord; I lift up my voice to the Lord for mercy. I pour out before him my complaint; before him I tell my trouble. When my spirit grows faint within me, it is you who watch over my way. In the path where I walk people have hidden a snare for me. Look and see, there is no one at my right hand; no one is concerned for me. I have no refuge; no one cares for my life.”
David suffered with depression throughout his life. Just because he was a warrior doesn’t mean that he never felt weak or broken. Being broken is not a defeat. It is an admission. It is your building block. It doesn’t mean that you don’t work, it just means that you are not functioning PROPERLY and this is exactly where God moves in to do the rest of the work when you surrender your life completely to Him. I find myself struggling sometimes like David. Whether it is the absence of something, fighting through emotions, battling the past, thoughts, memories, dreams, doubts, fears, anger or frustration…anything that tries to pull me away from my calling from God. But I have found that when you admit your weakness, you place yourself in the strongest position possible! In the hands of GOD! I am glad that I am weak, because if I wasn’t, I would not be able to experience the strength of God.
Recently I bent my bank card by sitting on it while it was in my back pocket. I refuse to go back to the bank and get a whole new number again. So I tried it for a purchase and sure enough it swiped right through and completed my transaction. Now I know that I don’t have to change it. It is bent but it still works! I love how the cashier always looks at me with this puzzled expression. They even try straightening out the card. I just tell them to swipe it – “Watch, just put it through anyway because it still works!” That is how we are in the natural. There may be something off, crooked, broken or even torn through stages and experiences in our life but we still work! We are alive and moving despite any defect.
Psalm 60:12 states “Through God we will do valiantly for it is He who shall tread down our enemies.” He is the one that will validate us and win the war. There may be something off, crooked, broken or even torn but we still work. We are alive and moving despite any defect. Just as God saw David fit to make him a leader in the time of his weakest moment, so He will do the same with us. As time passed David then became king over Israel and one of the greatest leaders ever know in history despite any imperfections.
I refer to this quote that states, “Perhaps the butterfly is proof that you can go through a great deal of darkness yet become something …BEAUTIFUL!” And certainly so shall you become something beautiful before God. He made you, found you and chose you. Believe that God will use you no matter what.