Benjamin and I have been reading through the Old Testament in his Children's Bible. We approached the battle stories...which any little boy enjoys. David and Goliath, Joshua, Gideon and Deborah... all winning victory over their enemies. After reading through the top Biblical battles, I could see the titles on the Christian Top-Sellers list if these events happened today:
- Walls Will Fall with a Shout - How to Conquer for Your Inheritance, by Joshua
- Fool-Proof Business Associates - How to Pick Those You Want at Your Side, by Gideon
- Women Can Lead The Way - How Women Can Overthrow the Competition - by Deborah and Jael
- Only One Stone, No Need for More - Don't Overload Yourself, Lighten Up - by King David
What struck me while reading with Benjamin was the fact that each battle was won in a different way. God didn't repeat. He didn't pass down the conquering handbook of past successes to each new commander. He usually took the most unlikely person and put them in charge. He did insane things...how could a shout cause walls to fall, lights in pots cause the defeat of a mighty army or a prophet laying on his side for the sins of a nation?
The Victory was going to be the Lord's Victory and not men's.
How many times have I run to the latest "Best Seller" to find what armor I am to wear. How am I to enter into the battle of life? How am I to win the Victory? to Parent? to be a Wife? to be a Christian? to eat right? to reach my neighbors for Christ?
What worked for David with one stone wasn't going to work for Gideon or Joshua. Why do I feel that someone else's victory, which had come only from the Lord... would work for me? Just because God gave the victory on how to lose weight, how to succeed in marriage, how to have children that never rebel................ (the list goes on and on) for others, does that mean it is for me? Other than God's own set of written laws, there are alot of variations He has placed in each of us that requires His own personal plan for our life. As our pastor said one day, "You know those parenting books were written from someone who it worked for, but they didn't have the same combination of personalities, sins, etc. that your family does... that is why it didn't work for you."
If the Lord wants the Glory to go to only Him......................then isn't it He that gives out the commands and orders to the win the battle He has given me?
This doesn't mean I will never read another book. It just means I need to make sure WHOSE commands I am following. The disappointment that comes when "Top-Seller" methods don't work only proves that their method wasn't what the Lord intended to win MY battle....it won the author's battle.
May I give back Saul's armor and be courageous enough to ask, "how do you want me to enter this battle?" "Lord, may the victory be yours and not mine. May your methods seem foolish to those around me so that no one can doubt it is YOU that has won the battle."