The past couple of days the Lord has been teaching me such a fun lesson. He has been using a mixture of sermons, books, and pure unfiltered revelation from him to teach me. There is a quote by Bill Johnson where he says, “Many believers philosophy is– I have a red light until God gives me a green one. And the green light never comes.”
Through two brothers in Christ, the Lord has shown me that such a lifestyle was not the way many lived before and during Christ’s life and death. Yet, it seems to have become the life of us who are living far after Christ’s death and ressurection. [And quick disclaimer to give credit where credit is due, most of this has been sparked and/or paraphrased from revelation God gave Bill Johnson.]
The first brother in Christ who taught me there is a different way to live life, was Jonathan, Sauls son. If you go to 1 Samuel 14:1-23 you have a really incredible story of Jonathan getting an idea, and going with it, then God deciding to back him up. So lets embark on this story together so you can see what I am reffering to.
One day Jonathan looks at the kid who carried his armor and says, “Lets go see what the Philistines are up to.” But Jonathan was “wise” enought to know he shouldn’t go tell his dad where he was going or that he was even going anywhere. So off Jonathan and his little-armor-bearer-buddy go. Now as they are climbing through this pass towards where the Philistines are camped out at, Jonathan gets another idea. Jonathan says to his armor bearer, “lets actually go into where the philistines are camped out, there is a CHANCE the Lord might deliver them into our hands! I know that no number can hinder the Lord from keeping us safe! (Side Note: 1 Samuel 14:6 says, “Jonathan said to the young man who carried his armor, ‘come let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised. It may be that the Lord will work for us, for nothing can hinder the Lord from saving by many or by few.'” Now, I don’t know for sure, because the bible doesn’t say… BUT, I find it interesting that Jonathan says it may be that the Lord will work for us… then goes on to basically say I have no doubt he can do it… I just do not know if he will. That, to me, makes it seem like Jonathan isn’t headed to the Philistine camp because the Lord spoke to him and said, “Jonathan, I want you to go defeat the Philistines, I will give you victory and protection.” But it makes it seem like Jonathan had this idea, saw the potetial it had to glorify God, and out of the fact he KNEW God and what GOD was capable of, he knew that it was somethign totally in Gods power to do. Okay back to the story.) So Jonathan just asked his armor bearer to come with him into the Philistines camp. And the armor bearer looks at Jonathan and says, “You really wanna? Well hey why not it sounds fun, I am all for doing whatever crazy thing comes to you. I’m not turning back!” (Side note: So to make sure your tracking with me… We have 2 men, ONE is a soldier, the other is a armor bearer… The armor bearer is probably like the waterboy of the football team, He can’t play football and he can’t make the football team to save his life, and yet he so desperately longs to be a part of the excitement, he will become the water boy…. or in this case the armor bearer. And they are about to go into the Philistine camp…in hopes to go into battle.) okay back to the story… Jonathan looks at his armorbearer and says, “Okay, so this is our battle plan… We are going to go out in the open and wait for the Philistines to spot us. Then if they say something along of the lines, ‘wait until we come to you.’ that is what we will do…. we will wait… BUT if they say, ‘Hey come here…’ or something along those lines… then we can KNOW that God has given them into our hands!” and Jonathan’s armor bearer says, “sure.”. (Side note: So let me point out the fact that Jonathan is on this mission that was more than likely congured up in his own mind… not by some divine encounter with the voice of the Lord instructing him… and then the Lord doesn’t say to Jonathan if the Philistines say come up here… then you can be sure I’m with you… JONATHAN says hmmm I think if they say this… God is gonna be with us… and so Jonathan creates the sign and then he also creates interpretation, and the sign Jonathan thinks up, is for that situation, a likely action to happen… I dont know about you but I’m sitting here thinking okay… either I’ve got the wrong mindset of a sign or Jonathan does… because when I think of sign… I think of something that confirms what I am wanting to do that WOULDNT normally happen… Okay back to the story.) So Jonathan and his armor bearer go stand in the wide open feild and wait for the Philistines to see them. And then the Philistines see them and call to them, “HEY! Come on up here! We have something we want to show you!” And when Jonathan hears this he looks at his armor bearer and says, “Welp, didn’t I say that sign meant God has given them into Isreal’s hand… SO what are we waiting for? Follow me as we climb up this mountain that is so steep we have to climb on our hands and knees and lets kill us some philistines…” and so they climb and they climb and they climb and when they get to the top God caused the Philistine army to fall before Jonathan and not be able to get up and then the first strike Jonathan and his armor bearer made killed 20 men… 20 men with one strike… then the rest of the Philistine go into a panic… the earth quakes… and this news travels all the way back to Saul who is hiding out in a cave.
Okay we are gong to leave that story… and I am going to point out some facts about Paul that until I read them in a book Bill Johnson wrote I had never made the connection between. In fact I’m just going to give you the clip from the book.
” The apostle Paul lived in the “green light district” of the Gospel. He didn’t need signs in the heavens to convince him to obey the Scriptures. When Jesus said, “Go!” that was enough. But he still needed the Holy Spirit to show him what was at the forefront of the Father’s mind. He had a burden for Asia, and tried to go there and preach. The Holy Spirit stopped him, which also means he did not lead him. He then tried to go to Bithynia, but agian, the Holy spirit said no. He then had a dream of a man pleading with him to come to Macedonia. So he went to Macedonia to preach the Gospel. This is a wonderful story of God’s leading(see Acts 16:6-10)”
I love the testimonies Jonathan and Paul’s lives give in these two places because it shows us what can happen when we remember God created us and as long as we are submitted to Him in all we do, whether it is originally inspired by God’s voice or a thought that popped into our heads. One of two things will happen God will decided to back us up, like He did Jonathan, and display his glory and faithfulness, yet again, to an entire people group. Or else He will speak to the tender place of our hearts and use the Holy Spirit to tell us no, as he did with Paul.
God calls us to be chlidlike and along with childlikeness comes misunderstandings as we learn definitions of words and actions. Another thing childlikeness brings along is creativeness and adventureness, as chlidren we need to allow ourselves to dream innocent dreams of greatness and impossible ways to bring glory to our God.
So I want to challenege you, if you dont have a specific thing the Lord has spoken to you to do with your life right now. Be creative, dream up something HUGE, that you can only do if God shows up, in order to bring glory to Him. Then go for it! See if he tells you no, or backs you up. And if he backs you up, have fun glorifying God just as Jonathan did. If he tells you no, go back to the drawing board, dream again, just as Paul did.