Bible Reading: 2 Samuel 23: 8-17
Many years ago, as a young man passionate about my soccer team, I dealt with a lot of feelings of betrayal. I could never have imagined some of the soccer starts that we had idolised and (if I’ll be honest) worshipped for years leaving the team for any reason. It didn’t make any sense to my young mind. Just some weeks earlier, they were granting interviews about their love for the club and all that. Then some ‘bigger’ team came along and offered more money. I remember how my heart would feel like it was torn into a hundred pieces when I watched them play for rival teams- and worse still, they were looking happy!
Through the years though, I’ve been forced to know that it’s part of the sport. But not just the sport though, it’s part of life and the world we live in. From workplaces to homes, from churches to relationships, stories of betrayal abound.
Loyalty is more scarce than it has ever been.
But in spite of all the betrayal in the world, God calls us to live lives of loyalty and of faithfulness. It many times seems counter culture, but it is true Kingdom culture.
To be Christian is to be loyal- loyal to the Lord, loyal to the people God puts in our lives, loyal to our commitments, loyal with the opportunities God gives us, and so on.
Loyalty is not a thing of followers to leaders only. It’s not a thing of servants to masters only. Loyalty is an everybody thing.
Our passage today typifies how loyalty can be from the followers to a leader, and the leader to the followers also. Our reading starts from the prowess and might of David’s men, but how all that counted for nothing when they laid down their lives to serve their leader’s desire with deep loyalty. But it was not just a thing of David’s men laying their lives down to serve their leadership, it was also a story of David laying his thirst down to honour his men. Such a beautiful picture of how loyalty stirs and inspires loyalty.
Loyalty is really about being ‘hearted’ towards. It is the giving of our whole hearts.
When a loyal person gives his word, he puts his whole heart to it. When a loyal person shows up, he shows up with his whole heart. When he says he’s a follower of Jesus, he puts his whole heart to it. When he says he’s in a marriage or relationship, he puts his whole heart to it. He loves with his whole heart. He serves with his whole heart. He honours with his whole heart. He works with his whole heart. He studies with his whole heart.
Loyalty is about living with our whole hearts, and all that we are. It’s never a half-hearted thing.
Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Matthew 22:37-39 NKJV
Let’s believe that this year we won’t live faint hearted or half-hearted. As we wait on God today, let’s believe for the Holy Spirit to awaken and stir up a spark of fierce loyalty in us. Let’s believe to be loyal to the cause of Christ, loyal to the people of God, loyal to those who lead us, loyal to those we lead, loyal to the people we do life with, loyal to our commitments, and so on. That’s what being Christian is. That’s something God particularly looks out for in us.
For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him… 2 Chronicles 16:9 NKJV
In Prayer today:
- Pray for a stirring up of your heart today towards being a more loyal person.
- Pray for the Lord to give you the wisdom to pick your commitments right, in such a way that it doesn’t water down your sense of loyalty. Pray that this year, you will be fiercely committed to the right things, the right people and the right causes.
Lean in Moment
In our lean in moment today, we meditate/pray setting our hearts in the direction of loyalty that God calls us to. Click here