We’ve rearranged our Sunday nights into a leadership/personal development night. I’m starting a new series this Sunday night, August 24th, 2008. It is entitled, “Lids.” This is the first sermon.

LIDS PART 1
Saul’s and David’s lids

Well, I want to welcome each of you to start of something different on Sunday nights. We are starting what I’m going to call, Leadership and personal development on Sunday evenings.

Whether you are a leader or not in the church, all of us have opportunities for growth, both in leadership and in our own personal lives. The purpose of these type of evenings is to become discipled in the areas of leadership and our personal lives. We don’t want to be stagnant, but continue to grow in our walk with the Lord and with one another.

Tonight we are going to start by digging into the subject of lids.

What do I mean by lids? Well, here is the dictionary definition: “A removable or hinged cover for a hollow receptacle or box. A curb, restraint, or limit.” This last meaning is the one that we will go by. So when we speak of lids in our personal life or in our leadership ability we are talking about things that could restrain, or limit our full potential and effectiveness.

Before we go any further, please understand that I as the Pastor and Spiritual leader of this church has number of lids that limit or restrain me from my full potential. I realize that. I can do one of three things: (1) I can just give up because it is going to be difficult for me to change; (2) Or I can just accept my lids and restraints and do what I can; or (3) I can ask the Lord for His help to remove these lids. One by one. I’m endeavoring to follow the latter example.

How about you? Have you thought about what is restraining or limiting you of your full potential in Christ? Not in just church leadership, but in everyday situations and living? If we stopped right here, I think we could come up with a number of things that is there to hinder us, and that is even before asking the help of the Holy Spirit to reveal our lids.

Well, I hope this series on lids helps all of us uncover the potential that God has placed inside of each of us.

You see, each person her tonight has the potential to become a leader.

Let’s dig a little into Saul and David this evening and see what we can learn about their lids and how they handled them.

1 Samuel 9:1-2 HCSB – 1 There was an influential man of Benjamin named Kish son of Abiel, son of Zeror, son of Becorath, son of Aphiah, son of a Benjaminite. 2 He had a son named Saul, an impressive young man. There was no one more impressive among the Israelites than he. He stood a head taller than anyone else.

The Children of Israel had been asking God for a King. Before they had kings, they had Judges governing them with the one true God as their king. But the people wanted much more than this, they wanted a king like all the other nations surrounding them had.

God gave these people Saul. On the surface, he should have been a great leader. Notice in our passage we read:
• He was from an influential family within Benjamin.
• He was impressive and much taller than anyone else.

Saul looked like he had all the qualifications to be a great leader. The problem was, Saul may have had the outward appearance, but he did not have the character he needed to be a leader that God could use. He quickly began to discredit himself and his leadership. And God had to choose a new leader, David, a man after God’s own heart.

Now why did Saul fail as leader, but David succeed? I mean on the surface, David appeared to be weaker that Saul. Well, it has to do with what was their lid, or what was restraining them from be an effective leader.

Let’s look at a few things tonight.

1. Both received counsel from Godly men.

A. Both Saul and David had Samuel at the beginning of their reigns.

Samuel was a wise judge and prophet of God. So what went wrong in Saul’s case?

B. Let’s look at the differences in their reigns.

Saul never really understood the nature of leadership. The day he was appointed king, he actually hid from the people. When he finally accepted the leadership position, he never moved his rule beyond a charisma based rule. (By the way, it takes much more than charisma to be a good leader). Because he never really acknowledged his failures and sought God’s forgiveness, he lost favor with God.

David understood his position of leadership. He knew that His leadership stood or failed by His recognition of God in His life. He may be King, but he knew that God Almighty was the true ruler of the children of Israel. He chose a center of government, Jerusalem, and captured it. He allowed the downcast and the hurting to be a part of his reign. He didn’t forsake them.

2. Both had to face the same giant.

A. This giant was none other than Goliath.

B. Saul, hid and wouldn’t face the giant.

C. David faced the giant, not because he thought he could win, but because this giant was blaspheming God.

His love for God surpassed His love for his own life.

3. Both had to face failures.

A. Saul would not accept responsibility when he would disobey God.

He would blame the people, Samuel, and anyone else before he accept the blame for his mistakes and sins.

B. David, on the other-hand would always accept full blame for his failures and would repent in sorrow before God.

4. David was the one who was willing to lift the lid of restraint.

A. He recognized he needed the Lord to help him.

B. He also recognized he needed the Lord’s forgiveness when he failed Him.

C. By recognizing these things, the lid of restraint was continuingly being lifted higher in David’s life.

We can all learn from David. If we want to reach hour potential and become the person God would have us to be, then we need to lift the lids on our lives. This is the only way that we can go to the next level.

It is natural to be afraid to face these lids, but don’t fear. Trust the Lord to help you to lift those lids. Just think what He can do as you submit your life to Him and allow Him to reveal each lid that needs lifting?

REFLECTION

In your life, have you been more like a David or Saul?

FURTHER STUDY

1 Samuel 10:17-24; 13:5-15; 15:10-16:13; 17:32-18:16; 2 Samuel 5:1-5; 11:1-5,14-15,26-27; 12:1-15.

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