Charge Into The Fight


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By Ben Poole similar to Andy Stanley, Francis Chan , Judah Smith, Andy Stanley, Craig Groeschel,, Ben Poole similar to Andy Stanley, Francis Chan, Judah Smith, Andy Stanley, and Craig Groeschel. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.
Sermon #3 Based Upon the Book Chase The Lion and Mark Batterson's Sermon Series Chase The Lion It’s not the size of the dog in the fight. It’s the size of the fight in the dog. You’ve got to 1) Define Success 2) Take it One Step at a Time 3) Get Around the Right People 4) Adopt a Growth Mindset 5) Fight for Your Dream until your Hand Freezes to the Sword. Favor not Magic 2 Samuel 23:9-10 NIV 9 Next to him was Eleazar son of Dodai the Ahohite. As one of the three mighty warriors, he was with David when they taunted the Philistines gathered at Pas Dammim[a] for battle. Then the Israelites retreated, 10 but Eleazar stood his ground and struck down the Philistines till his hand grew tired and froze to the sword. The LORD brought about a great victory that day. The troops returned to Eleazar, but only to strip the dead. I’d rather fail at the right thing than succeed at the wrong thing. Stephen Covey- said that most people are so busy climbing the ladder of success that they fail to realize it’s leaning against the wrong wall. before you go after your dream, you’d better make sure it’s the right one. Here’s my definition: Success is when those who know you best respect you most. At the end of the day, I want to be famous in my home. There is a line in the lion chaser’s manifesto that says, You need to know what battlefield you’re willing to die on. Every one of David’s mighty men was willing to die. Why? Because they had a clearly defined goal—to crown David king. I’ve given a few definitions of faith before: • Faith is the willingness to look foolish. • Faith is the process of unlearning our fears. • Faith is taking the first step before God reveals the second step. Let me give you one more. I think it’s the best biblical definition. Hebrews 11:1 says, “Faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Fighting for your dream starts there. You’ve got to know what you’re fighting for. And Jesus is the best example. Hebrews 12:2 says, “For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame.” How do you endure nine-inch nails through your hands and feet? And not just endure it but scorn it? Jesus did it because He had a clear vision of His end goal—you. Your salvation was the joy that was set before Him, and evidently you are worth the cross to Christ. Success for Jesus wasn’t overthrowing the Roman Empire. He could have done that, but the goal was winning the whole world. The end goal, the end game was eternal salvation for you and me. #2: Take It One Step at a Time If life is like a box of chocolates, then dreams are like a box of Legos. The picture on the front of the box is the dream. That’s Hebrews 11:1. That’s “confidence in what we hope for.” But whatever is on the front of the box doesn’t come out fully assembled. You have to put the pieces together. And honestly, the process of pursuing the dream is more important than the final outcome. It’s less about accomplishing the dream and more about who you become in the process. We want fully assembled success, but we’ve got to go after our dream one step at a time. There are no shortcuts. In 1889, a hundred artists presented their plans for the centerpiece of the World’s Fair in Paris. The winner was an engineer named Alexandre Gustave Eiffel, who proposed a 984-foot tower—the tallest building in the world at the time. It was Eiffel’s dream, but it was really a dream within a dream. Eiffel tipped his hat to 72 scientists, engineers, and mathematicians whose names are engraved on the tower. It was their collective genius that Eiffel leveraged to build his tower. And without a team, his dream would never have become reality. It took 300 carpenters and riveters and hammermen to put together the 18,038-piece puzzle of wrought iron in two years, two months, and five days. My point? Your dream is a Lego set. You need a clear definition of success, but then you’ve got to put it together brick by brick by brick. You get into shape one workout at a time. You get out of debt one payment at a time. You earn your graduate degree one class at a time You get the job promotion one project at a time. You get the game ball one practice at a time. Whatever dream journey you’re on, you have to take it one step at a time. And if you keep doing the right things day in and day out, then one day God is going to show up and show off. IT TAKES GRIT Psychologist Alfred Adler proposed theory of compensation. what we think of as disadvantages often prove to be advantages because they force us to cultivate compensatory attitudes and abilities that probably would have lain dormant or gone undiscovered without them. And it’s often as we compensate for those disadvantages that we discover our greatest giftings. 70 percent of the art students that Adler studied had optical anomalies. Rembrandt is thought to have only seen in two dimensions. And some of history’s greatest composers—Mozart and Beethoven among them— had degenerative conditions in their ears. A more recent study of small-business owners found that 35 percent of them were self-identified dyslexics. the disadvantage of dyslexia forced this group of entrepreneurs to cultivate different skill sets that set them up for success. Long story short, perceived disadvantages such as birth defects, physical ailments, or even the environmental challenge of poverty can be springboards to success. And that success is not achieved in spite of those perceived disadvantages. It’s achieved because of them. John Irving is a great example. Irving is considered one of the great storytellers of his generation. His book The World According to Garp won a National Book Award. His screenplay The Cider House Rules won an Academy Award. But here’s the thing: Irving earned a C- in high school English. And it took him five years to graduate. His SAT verbal was 475 out of 800, which means two-thirds of us who took the SAT scored higher. But do you have a National Book Award? An Academy Award? Irving’s teachers thought he was lazy, thought he was stupid. The reality is, he was dyslexic. But it’s that disadvantage that propelled him. Irving said, “If my classmates could read our history assignment in an hour, I allowed myself two or three.” Irving had to study longer and work harder. And it’s his study habits and work ethic that ultimately propelled him professionally. In Irving’s words, “To do anything well, you have to overextend yourself.” Pinkel- “I’m a very stubborn person,” he says. “A coach once told me, ‘Never run from a fight—the farther you run, the harder it is to fight back.’” An irony: Donald Pinkel spent most of his career trying to vanquish one devastating children’s disease, but as a young man he was nearly killed by another. In 1954, then a 28-year-old pediatrician serving in the Army Medical Corps in Massachusetts, Pinkel contracted polio. One night, as the virus ravaged through him, he nearly stopped breathing. Through his fever haze, he thought to himself, “This is it. I’m not going to wake up.” For months, he was paralyzed. Having to rely on others to feed and care for him, he had good reason to believe his medical career was over. The Army retired him because he was unfit for duty and he spent the better part of a year in rehabilitation, learning how to walk again. Slowly, steadily, he graduated from a wheelchair to braces to crutches. That is, combine all the drugs known to induce remission and administer them to the patient more or less concurrently, at maximum tolerable dosages, over a sustained period. In addition, he would employ radiation of the cranium and the spine to reach the disease’s final redoubts. Finally, he would continue to administer multi-drug chemotherapy for three years to “eradicate residual systemic leukemia.” It would be a regimen so relentless, multifarious and prolonged that the disease would be permanently destroyed. He called it “Total Therapy.” On his first day at the institute, Freireich was assigned to care for children in the leukemia ward — a job no one else wanted. 8 weeks less than 1% more than a year. Now 60-80% He was assigned to do it. Didn’t choose. Father died when 2 mom worked in a sweatshop 7 days a week. Didn’t have anyone to love him. Decided he wanted he wanted to be a doctor when he meet a nice doctor that wanted him to. “Leukemia at that time was a horrible illness — a death sentence,” he says. “Most children lived only eight weeks after being diagnosed. Ninety-nine percent died within a year.” His first order of business was to halt the nonstop bleeding that is the hallmark of the disease. “Leukemia prevents blood from clotting,” he explains. “Children bled to death. The leukemia ward looked like a slaughterhouse. Blood covered the pillowcases, the floor, the walls … it was horrific.” Had to go against his hospital board and his the other Doctors. Freireich wanted to give many of the treatments to the children all at once and bring them almost to the point of death. The common thought was they are going to die no matter what so don’t torture them further. Most Drs quit after seeing the kids die. What made him tough? His childhood. 10 years of ugly living. Survived that and gave him persistence and he was tough enough to do it. He also sensed a duty to do his job. “You’re insane,” and told him he‘d be fired if he kept doing the platelet transfusions that were keeping leukemia patients from bleeding to death before they could receive treatment for their cancer. DAVID AND GOLIATH Your gifts maybe covered by what you think are weaknesses Destiny Revealed Saul slept in the palace on silk sheets while David’s band of brothers camped out in cold caves. Saul’s army was well armed and well equipped. David’s mighty men? Not so much, as evidenced by the fact that Benaiah had to steal the Egyptian’s spear to use it against him. And while Saul’s army ate all you can eat buffets, David’s mighty men had to hunt and kill everything they ate. In other words, they had to work harder, grow stronger, get smarter. David’s mighty men seemed to be at a disadvantage, but that’s how God makes heroes. The perceived disadvantages actually developed skills in David’s mighty men that they didn’t know they had. For Josheb, the disadvantage was 800-to-1 odds. For Benaiah, it was a 500-pound lion. For Eleazar, it was the rest of the army retreating. Destiny isn’t revealed on sunny days. It’s usually revealed on snowy days. Destiny isn’t revealed when everything is going your way. Destiny is revealed when everybody else retreats. Destiny isn’t just revealed in your natural gifts and abilities. It’s also revealed in the compensatory skills you have to work extra hard to cultivate. With that as a backdrop, let’s look at Eleazar’s story: Next to him was Eleazar son of Dodai the Ahohite. As one of the three mighty warriors, he was with David when they taunted the Philistines gathered at Pas Dammin for battle. Then the Israelites retreated, but Eleazar stood his ground and struck down the Philistines till his hand grew tired and froze to the sword. (2 Samuel 23:9-10, NIV) Now we’re ready to talk about five ways to fight for your dream. #1: Define Success (before you get started) If you succeed at the wrong thing, you’ve failed. If you fail at the right thing, you’ve succeeded. #3: Get Around the Right People Second Samuel 23:9 says that Eleazar was “with David when they taunted the Philistines gathered at Pas Dammin.” He was in the right place at the right time with the right person. One of the best ways to discover your dream is to serve someone else’s. And if you don’t have a dream, get around someone who does. That’s what Eleazar did. Here’s what I believe. God is in the business of building your résumé. God is in the business of building your network. But you have to get around the right people. I see that example set throughout Scripture. Joshua climbed Mount Sinai with Moses. Elisha shadowed Elijah. Ruth wouldn’t leave her mother-in-law’s side. They got around the right people and it paid dividends. Joshua took over for Moses, leading the people into the Promised Land. Elisha got Elijah’s mantle and a double portion of his anointing. Ruth got a second chance at love by marrying Boaz. They had a boy named Obed, who had a boy named Jesse, who had a boy named David. Ruth became King David’s great-grandmother. Why? Because of who she hung out with! Choose your friends wisely. Benjamin Franklin’s curriculum vitae might be the most impressive among our Founding Fathers. Franklin not only signed the Declaration of Independence; he also edited it. His inventions include the lightning rod, the Franklin stove, and bifocals. And his periodical, Poor Richard’s Almanac, made him the most widely read writer in 18th-century America. Franklin started the American Philosophical Society, served as postmaster of Philadelphia, and was unanimously elected sixth president of the Supreme Executive Council of Pennsylvania. A résumé like that can seem a little surreal, but I left out a few critical pieces of the puzzle. It’s not insignificant that Benjamin Franklin served as a clerk in the Pennsylvania General Assembly for 15 years before he won a seat. He transcribed thousands of speeches before he delivered one. He listened to thousands of debates before he got into one. Benjamin Franklin also served for nearly a decade as an apprentice printer to his brother. And before he published Poor Richard’s Almanac, he collected the best essays from his favorite magazine, The Spectator. He read and reread them. He took notes. Then he hid the originals in a drawer and tried to rewrite them. Then he compared his version with the original version, discovered his shortcomings, and corrected them. That’s fighting for your dream! And by the way, it was Franklin who said, “There are no gains without pains.” #4: Adopt a growth mindset I believe that just about anybody can do just about anything if they work hard enough, work long enough, and work smart enough. Are there exceptions? Yes, there are genetic limitations. But in the grand scheme of things, just about anybody can do just about anything if they fight until their hand freezes to the sword. It’s not the size of the dog in the fight. It’s the size of the fight in the dog. And it comes back to our mindset. In 1939, Finland was a huge underdog in the Winter War. The Soviet army was three times larger, had thirty times as many airplanes, and had a hundred times as many tanks. But the Finnish troops held their ground, much like Eleazar held his. In 1940, Time magazine ran a feature on the Finns. Here’s an excerpt: The Finns have something they call sisu. It is a compound of bravado and bravery, of ferocity and tenacity, of the ability to keep fighting after most people would have quit, and to fight with the will to win. The Finns translate sisu as “the Finnish spirit” but it is a much more gutful word than that. The New York Times ran a similar feature. It said, “A typical Finn is an obstinate sort of fellow who believes in getting the better of bad fortune by proving that he can stand worse.” Sisu is the will to fight. Sisu is unwillingness to give up. Sisu is fierce resolve. Sisu is guts, Sisu is grit. In her brilliant book Mindset, Carol Dweck 2 different mindsets A fixed mindset believes that our qualities are fixed in stone. A growth mindset believes that our basic qualities can be cultivated through effort. The fixed mindset tries to validate itself. It’s always on trial. The growth mindset tries to stretch itself. It’s always learning. The fixed mindset is focused on outcomes. The growth mindset is focused on inputs. With the fixed mindset, when you fail, you’re a failure. With the growth mindset, when you fail, it’s a failed attempt. Favor is what God can do for you that you cannot do for yourself. And I believe in anointing. I believe in supernatural gifting beyond human ability, divine revelation beyond human knowledge, and supernatural power beyond human strength. So I believe in favor. But God won’t give you those things if you’re lazy. You can’t just pray like it depends on God; you must work like it depends on God. Your have to fight for your dream until your hand freezes to the sword. On July 2, 1863, Joshua Chamberlain and his 300-soldier regiment were all that stood between the Confederates and certain defeat at a battlefield in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. At 2:30 p.m., the Confederate Army charged, but Chamberlain and his men held their ground. This was followed by a second, third, fourth, and fifth charge. Only 80 Union blues stood standing at Little Round Top by the last charge. Chamberlain himself was knocked down by a bullet that hit his belt buckle, but the 34-year-old teacher got right back up. One of his sergeants informed him that no reinforcements were coming, and his men were down to one round of ammunition per soldier. A 12-year-old lookout in a tree told him that the Confederates were forming ranks for another charge. Chamberlain knew he needed to act decisively. The rational thing to do at that point, with no ammunition and no reinforcements, would have been to surrender. But Chamberlain wasn’t wired that way. He made a defining decision that turned the tide of the war and single-handedly saved the Union. In full view of the enemy, Chamberlain climbed onto their barricade of stones and gave a command. He pointed his spear at the enemy and yelled, “Charge!” Chamberlain’s men fixed bayonets and started running at the Confederate army that vastly outnumbered them. They caught them off guard by executing a great right wheel, and in what ranks as one of the most improbable victories in military history, 80 Union soldiers captured 4,000 confederates in five minutes flat. Historians believe that if Chamberlain had not charged, the rebels would have gained the high ground. If the rebels had gained the high ground, there is a good chance they would have won the Battle of Gettysburg. If the rebels had won that battle, the historical consensus is that the Confederates would have won the war. After the war, Joshua Chamberlain went on to serve as the 32nd governor of Maine and president of his alma mater, Bowdoin College. In 1893, 30 years after he raised his spear, he was awarded the Medal of Honor by President Grover Cleveland for carrying the advance position on the Great Round Top. In his last years, Chamberlain would reflect upon the war with these words: “I knew I may die, but I also knew that I would not die with a bullet in my back. I had deep within me the inability to do nothing.” I don’t want to die with a bullet in my back. Two thousand years ago, Jesus said, “I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” In other words, charge! We’re called to play offense with our lives by making the most of the time, talent, and treasure God has given us. Charge your marriage! Charge your children! Charge your dream! Charge God! Quit running away from what you’re afraid of. Quit sitting back and waiting for something to happen. You’ve got to run to the 500-pound lion. You’ve got to raise your spear against 800-to-1 odds. You’ve got to fight until your hand freezes to the sword.

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