I was reading today in one of my leadership books that I pick up from time to time. The author was referring back to one of the lesser known stories about David (1 Samuel 22). It's while he is running from King Saul. Saul has become very jealous of the young warrior's popularity with the people. It says that, as David ran for his life, God began to gather people around him. These would be people that would form his inner circle of buddies. They would help him win his battles, withstand Saul's assaults and ascend to his place as the King of Israel.
Now, if you've never read the story, I want you to stop right here and picture the guys that God brought to David. The wisest. The most respected. Probably a few guys with some money to fund the adventures they would share. All-in-all, they were the cream of the crop in the Hebrew culture...right? Nope. The Bible specifically says that they were a bunch of miscreants. One translation says they were in distress, in debt and discontented. It made me think back to another guy in Scripture (just talked about him last week at my church) Jephthah. Not your biggest Biblical character but, just like David, he surrounded himself with a bunch of thugs who helped him fulfill God's assignment. This kind of stuff happens all the way through Scripture. Think about it. Even the guys that Jesus surrounded himself with left a lot to be desired in our eyes--a tax collector, some fishermen, a doctor, a traitor.
The truth is, God loves doing things this way. Why? Because God has no interest in what I can do for Him, only what He can do for me. You see, guys who have it all together don't need a God who re-builds. They think they've got all the brains, power, popularity, whatever they need. Why bother God? Some of them probably think they can do Him some favors.
No, God's more interested in the failures. The guy who thinks he's at his wits end is exactly where God needs him. Brokenness is a key ingredient for the man or woman who longs to be used by God. Only then is the mixture right for God to come up with something big, so big it can not be credited to anyone else but Him.
Personal application? I guess this is more for me than for you. I've been daydreaming (some would call it vision-casting) today about where my church is headed. God has been so good to us and some cool things are happening BUT we're not there yet. I believe He has just begun gathering the "ones" who will make this become what God desired it to be in the first place. Here's what I need...a bunch of thugs, a bunch of failures, a bunch of losers. I really need men and women who are so broken and torn up that the only thing that's going to save them is a miracle. People who are hungry for something BIG! Know anyone like that? I'm taking applicants. WANTED: HUNGRY PEOPLE DESIRING SOMETHING FROM A GOD WHO DOES NOT DISAPPOINT. Those are the kind of people that God uses to change families and communities and nations. If you've got it all together, take it somewhere else. You don't need me and you don't need God. However, if you found yourself looking in the mirror this morning wondering if you could make it through one more day, I've got a place for you. It's a place where God is getting ready to do something big! It's a dream God gave me years ago and I'm hungry for it to become reality. Are you desperate enough to join me?