Summary: I don’t think we serve a second rate God that is happy with our leftovers. If really believe that there is none like God, then there should be nothing like the commitments and sacrifices we are willing to make to please Him.
Introduction — Cathy Rigby was a member of the U.S. Women’s Gymnastics Team during the 1972 Olympics held in Munich, Germany. As the reigning United States champion she had only one goal in mind—
to win a gold medal. Prior to the Olympics she had trained longer and harder than she ever had before. On the day the competition began, she prayed for the strength to control her emotions so that she could get through her routine without making mistakes. She was tense with determination not to let herself or her country down.
She performed well, but when it was all over and the winners were announced, her name was not among them. Cathy was crushed. Afterward, she joined her parents in the stands all set for a good cry. As she sat down, she could barely manage to say, “I’m sorry. I did my best.” To which her mother said, “You know that, and I know that, and I’m sure God knows that too.” Then, she heard her mother say 10 words that have impacted her life like none other: “Doing your best is more important than being the best.”
You know, as a young Christian I fell in love with God, and the more I thought about His great love for me the more I wanted Him to have only the best. He deserved it. But as I went along in my spiritual pilgrimage—I had times of utter frustration because I couldn’t give Him the best. Sometimes my own sin got in the way. At other times, I knew that even the very best that I could accomplish wasn’t good enough for Him. As I young pastor I shared my problem with a mentor of mine, a committed saint who has now gone to be with the Lord, his name of was Gerald Locke. He must have hung around Cathy Rigby’s mother at one time or another because he told me very simply that God was a whole lot more interested in my best than He was in the best.
I’m feeling a bit frustrated again these days. I’ve not fallen back into that performance trap that I was once in, my frustration now comes from seeing a lot of Christians who never try to offer God their best, they simply ask Him to settle for second best. Well brethren, I don’t think we serve a second rate God that is happy with our leftovers. If really believe that there is none like God, then there should be nothing like the commitments and sacrifices we are willing to make to please Him.
This evening, using the familiar story of David and Goliath as our guide, I want to look with you at some principles that lead to a life of accomplishment. We are going to look only at three areas, there could be many more, but as we look at each of them, put yourself in David’s shoes and see how you are measuring up to a shepherd boy who had nothing at all going for him—nothing that is except a heart that was perfect after the heart of God.
I. A Life of Accomplishment is Lived Courageously
Courage is a fascinating concept when you think about it. You can’t plan acts of courage. I don’t think firemen wake up in the morning and say “You know what, I think I’ll go pull some children out of a burning building today.” Although when they do does kinds of things they are tremendous acts of courage.
Nor do I think ordinary citizens go around looking for
ways to show off their courage—but we’ve all heard of
examples of unbelievable courage displayed by common
You may not be able to plan acts of courage, but you can choose to live courageously. When you choose to live courageously you tend to go against the flow. That’s because most people, Christians included are
more comfortable conforming than living courageously.
Think of David for a minute. He was given the responsibility of tending his father’s sheep. Sounds like a pretty menial job to me. I mean you don’t have to have very many smarts to look after sheep. But it was a responsibility that he took seriously. When wild animals came and attacked the flock, he could
have said “Well that’s too bad, but that bear was more than I could handle.” But David had already determined that he was going to be faithful to his responsibilities, and that meant that he was going to have to live courageously.
It’s easy for us say things are too big for us, or too hard, but that’s the easy way out. The fact of the matter is, God has called us to do some big things, and some hard things. And if we are going to get them done, we must begin to live courageously. Everybody else may be cowering before the giant—but we need to be bowing before the Lord.