Summary: We are born with them. We are often driven by them. Our emotions can help us and hurt us. The real challenge? Can our emotions help us Make a Difference?
Pt. 2 - We Have to Pea!
We started last week by talking about how we communicate anger. We could say, "I'm chapped. I'm hacked off. I'm ticked. I'm flashin'. I'm spittin' chips!" However, we discussed that how we say it isn't nearly as important as what we do with anger once we experience it. If we handle anger incorrectly, we destroy. If we learn the lessons of the account found in 2 Samuel 23, we discover that mad can become MAD. It is the account of David's mighty men. However, long before they were mighty, they were simply mad, chapped, and spittin' chips. Remember how they were described?
TEXT: 1 Samuel 22:1-2 (NIV)
David left Gath and escaped to the cave of Adullam. When his brothers and his father’s household heard about it, they went down to him there. All those who were in distress or in debt or discontented gathered around him, and he became their commander. About four hundred men were with him.
There were men who were in some kind of trouble, men who owed a lot of money, and men who were just not satisfied with life. (Bitter about life.)
Broke, busted and disgusted.
And yet these angry men learn to graduate, mature, and handle their anger until they MAD. I think we can learn from them right now.
Let's go back and read about another man that did this.
TEXT: 2 Samuel 23:11-12 (CEV)
Next was Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite. One time the Philistines brought their army together to destroy a crop of peas growing in a field near Lehi. The rest of Israel’s soldiers ran away from the Philistines, but Shammah stood in the middle of the field and killed the Philistines. The crops were saved, and the Lord gave Israel a great victory.
Now after I read this account, I am angry. Why couldn't the backdrop of this account be a squash patch or an okra patch? I mean you guys are very aware of my extreme distaste for veggies. However, for some fried squash or fried okra I am willing to go to war . . . but peas! Come on man! Let them have it! Not really . . . well maybe.
His story is strikingly similar to Eleazar's that we lead last week but with a few subtle details that I think will help us.
1. A pea patch may be your platform!
I think one of the glaringly distinct details that is missing could be the most valuable piece of information in this account. In Eleazar's account David was present. The man. The celebrity. The king. How many of you know that it is easier to talk big when someone you want to impress is next to you? It is easy to stand when someone who can bless you is around. Come on think back to your playground days. When that cute girl, or that popular guy is beside you your mouth could get the best of you. Think about now when that rich client, well known individual, or the big boss is in the room it is much easier to talk big, strut, and try to impress. But notice in this account Shammah was alone. No king for backup. No king to impress. No royalty that could reward. In fact, my question is why was Shammah near the pea patch to begin with? Ordinary, everyday activity.
He wasn't glory hunting. He was doing the ordinary faithfully and this became the platform for the extraordinary.
I wonder how many of us miss our platform because it shows up as a pea patch? Seemingly insignificant moments. Overlooked due to the fact that it seems ordinary. Instead we sit in our pea patch angry, but we aren't MAD. We daydream about our big moment. We fantasize about our name in lights. We hesitate, waiting on our moment and we never realize that our platform is our pea patch. Quit waiting on the big stage. I'm going to wait until others are watching. I'm going to wait until my efforts will be noticed. I'm going to wait till the stakes are higher. Instead, Shammah reminds us that it is when we are faithful in the pea patch that we become ruler over much.
He teaches us that the extraordinary is often birthed in the ordinary moments of faithfulness. Miracles are usually wrapped in the mundane.
Find your pea patch. Find your area. Find the small arena of influence and serve. It may seem insignificant to everyone else. It may be that everyone else runs from that place of service because it seems unnecessary or unworthy of their effort. However, if a Shammah shows up in their pea patch great victories for the kingdom can be won. When a mighty man or a mighty woman shows up and takes a stand by picking up the trash after first service. When a mighty man or a mighty woman shows up by staying late when everyone else heads for home. When a mighty man or a mighty woman cuts the grass for the elderly neighbor or drops groceries onto the porch of someone in need and no one is around to applaud or give accolades a mighty victory is won in a pea patch!