The Power of Pursuit

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- Michael Sitko. 

Do you ever find yourself noticing those people who always seem to succeed at everything they do? I’ve heard many business leaders refer to someone as having a "Midas Touch". Over the past two decades of my life I've had the privilege of working with some amazing leaders, many of whom, from outward appearance, would have seemed to be those kind of people that have that “Midas Touch”. What I eventually came to discover as I got to know them however was this, the special ability that they seemed to have, didn’t just happen upon them one day, it was forged in fire.  Behind every highlight reel of the success stories we see and hear, I have found the case to be, that there is more often then not, a story of heartache, trials and just plain hard gruelling work that paved the road to their success.   

One of the things that is often overlooked in many of the stories of people who have achieved great things in life, is the less than glorious beginnings and the many failures that litter the path that led to their success. As people we love to hear of the amazing and glorious tales of victory, success and breakthrough, because after all, we all want the happy ending to the story.  It would seem that God has wired us for success and for happy endings. The spirit within us knows and recognizes that we were made to succeed. God created each and every one of us with a drive and a desire to see a happy ending to the stories in which we live. And more than that, He empowered us with an overcoming spirit that was designed to rise to the occasion of the challenges we face to seek the glory that He destined to come from every new endeavour we undertake. The stark reality however that we often fail to realize in these times is that the character and skills sets needed to sustain the amazing gains we desire are often only forged in the fiery trials and failures that He allows us to partner with Him to overcome. 

Something that I have found to be true in life is this. You only fail if you choose to quit. This is the reality we find tucked away in the story of King David, which he discovered on the road to the high call and dream of God hidden within his heart.  David was a faithful son and brother. He diligently kept his fathers sheep, served his brothers and later rose to the place of serving in the kings household. David worked hard to represent his family name in an honourable manner. Despite David's best efforts though he could not control the actions and behaviour of the people around him nor even his own circumstances. The only thing David could control was how he personally responded to the curves that life threw his way.  

In the 30th chapter of the book of 1 Samuel we find David in exactly one of these moments. We find the young man, David, who has been promised the throne of Israel by God through the prophet Samuel, running for his life from his own king and mentor. David is forced to flee and to hide out with his men in enemy territory and to settle with their families there. It is here in this setting that a story unfolds that gives us a glimpse into what forged the “Midas Touch” in David’s life. After going out to battle alongside the Philistine armies, David is turned away from being allowed to help out with the battle and finds himself returning home feeling defeated and disgraced only to discover that while he and his men were away, a raiding party, of Amalekite warriors, had come through their region and plundered their City, burning it to the ground and taking their wives and children hostage, along with all their earthly possessions. 

Now if you are at all like me you may have read the story of David’s life and thought to yourself, “man David had such an amazing life, he got to sit before the Presence of the Lord, he got to be king, he had wealth of untold amounts and all that he could desire.” you may have been tempted to look at his life and think wow what amazing opportunities he had and look at the favour and amazing things God did for him. But if you don't take the time to look at the times like this in David’s life, you’ll miss out on the tests and trials that ultimately made him into that man who could sustain and maintain all the amazing things that God wanted and eventually did empower him to do and receive. 

I believe that this moment in David’s story was a defining moment for him. I believe that as David found himself in the place where literally no one was on his side and everyone was angry with him and even his own friends were talking about killing him. It was at this moment when David made a decision that literally defined him as a leader and taught him a lesson that led him to many more years of victory and ultimately to his destiny as the greatest king Israel would see.  That lesson was the "power of pursuit". In that moment, the story tells us that David encouraged himself in the Lord. I believe what that means is that David literally sat down and began to recount to himself all of the things that God had done for him and all of the promises that God had made to him and made a conscious choice in that moment that he was not going to give up, that he would not fail but rather to press on and become who God had said he was.  And David did just that and he was rewarded as God helped him on the journey and they recovered all of their families and possessions along with even more riches and spoil.  

If in that moment, David had not rallied himself, I believe he would have died there on that heap of burning rubble and ash that was once his City, along with the dreams and hopes that God had hidden in his heart.  

I don't know what trial or failure you are facing today but I do know this, greatness lives within you, I know that because it was put there by a great God who has an amazing plan for your life and mine.  And if we will just choose, like David did, to press on, if you will pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and rally your spirit, you too will see the same breakthroughs come in your life, just as David and so many others have, who have learned the "Power of "Pursuit".

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