This Sunday in our series, Kings, we looked at the life of King Saul.
Have you ever seen someone being given an opportunity to excel or succeed and they completely blow it? This is King Saul's life; he's been anointed by God to be the first king of Israel and to lead God's people into greatness, but in the end, he blows it.
If you're going to succeed in what God called you to do, you have to learn to lead through adversity and make difficult choices.
Here are a few key mistakes that lead to King Saul's downfall, and ultimately, stripped his family of their kingly status.
- The pressure of the situation caused him to compromise. When you are tested with adversity, how you respond is the key to finding success and to changing levels. The adversity that you face as a leader will give you the opportunity to strengthen your leadership and also move forward.
God gave King Saul a direct order to wait for Samuel the prophet before making the sacrifice and going into battle. When the Prophet Samuel arrived, he had found that King Saul had already made the sacrifice and disregarded God's direction. His excuse for disobedience was "My men were scattering, so I felt I had to make a sacrifice." How do you respond when you're pressured as a leader? When faced with pressure, King Saul--instead of pressing into God for wisdom--buckled under pressure and made a decision that cost him his kingship.
- Find solutions to the problem! In First Samuel 14, we see two types of people.
King Saul was the first type of person that we see here. He was sitting around with the men of Israel and only talking about the problem. He wasn't willing to do anything about it. He was comfortable where he was. People that talk about problems and don't come up with solutions will never advance in what God called them to do. When your whole focus is centered on talking about the negative aspects that you see in the situation, you only become critical and negative. God can never bring a person out of where they are or through a problem when they are negative and critical.
The second type of person that we see was King Saul's son, Jonathan. Here are the steps that he took concerning the problem that was before him:
Step One – What is the vision(or goal)? If you are unable to answer this question, you will never know the direction that you need to take next. For Israel, it was God's desire to take out the wicked Philistines who were enemies of God's people.
Step 2 - Come up with a plan! Jonathan came up with a few different plans. Getting information and looking for solutions to the problem is a key to discovering God's plan. Today, you have the mind of Christ to be able to find the solutions to every one of life's problems. Take out a piece of paper and jot down at least 3-5 possible solutions. God will give you creativity and wisdom as you seek to understand and become a problem-solver.
1. When pressured, press into God for direction.
2. Be the solution--not someone who feeds the problem.