This is pt4 of the ‘Safety- The Enemy of God’ series of posts that I’m writing to express several threads of thoughts that God’s weaving together in my spirit, a growing conviction. Read pt 1- man to monument cycle, pt 2- skunkworks & pt 3- a Jean Vanier quote.
God made me realise something recently, or to use christian jargon- “I had a revelation”.
My generation is David struggling to put on Saul’s armour before battle.
The teenager David’s dad gave him the day off tending sheep to deliver a lunch of bread, cereal and cheese to his elder brothers in the paralysed Israelite army (see 1 Samuel 17).
Horrified that the army sits motionless in fear before this giant who’s daring to curse God David offers to take down the warrior, who’s breastplate alone weighs 9 stone, maybe not much less than David.
King Saul sends for David and remarkably hears him out and offers David his own armour, which proves too heavy for him.
There is a generation stepping up to fight in the battle, stepping up to take their place in extending the rulership of the kingdom of heaven on this dark earth. Of course, individuals graduate from this rising generation but this generation always exists, it’s perpetual.
My generation is the young David.
When the David generation unelegantly heaves their elder’s helmet over their head some older onlookers in the church may say “look at them, are they really strong enough to fight for what’s dear to us?”
When the David generation strains under the weight of a heavy breastplate some will say “give them more, they must grow stronger.”
When the David generation discards the clunky armour with relief some may cry “they don’t want to get their hands dirty!”
Just give us five small stones and send us out.
No, we don’t trust our own strength either, but there’s a giant in the land and we know a God who loves to stack the odds against Himself and His people so He can win through for them.
That’s a word to my elder friends, now a word to my younger friends.
That giant is our future on this earth and beyond him is what we’re fighting for- the future, eternity, our promised land. We’ll never defeat the giant with our hearts set solely on him, we must keep eternity in our hearts.
Now, it can be easy for us youngers to feel encumbered by the administration and heavy provisions of the church, the slow moving beaurocratic systems that aim to keep us safe. It’s easy for us to despise what we haven’t built. It’s easy for us to want to throw off the heavy, restrictive helmet. But can we echo David when he told the King of how he’d learnt to trust and rely on God?
“Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine.’
Saul said to David, ‘Go, and the Lord be with you.’
1 Samuel 17:34-37
Those of us who are young, can we say we know God’s heart, that we’ve been communing with Him like David did, psalming with his lyre while tending sheep in the hills? Can we say we love scripture, that we love the word of God, that His word runs and grows in our hearts and we’re filled to overflowing and passionate about living out His call on our lives?
If we can then we can drop the armour and go with a few small stones of faith and take the future.
Let’s know God and let’s be bolder than lions.