By human standards, David was not qualified to be a leader. He was too young, too untrained, too “wrong family”. David became a warrior...but his tender spirit was his defining trait (See The Maxwell Leadership Bible, page 340). David was defined as a man by two things:
- tender heart - he spent time alone with God in tender intimacy to build a personal relationship with God
- tough spirit - he was made tough and could fight God’s battles as a warrior that God could call on to fight his battles
David began his leadership journey as the last of the family hierarchy, the one on the bottom. While his brothers looked down on him, God lifted him up. When his family bypassed him, God did not. God sees who you are, God sees who we are as a nation, and he doesn’t forget his promises to us. God sees the young leaders He wants to bring out and He uses you and me to do that. God uses intentional relationships to disciple His future leaders.
David’s life demonstrates this truth: faithfulness in small things is rewarded by God, faithfulness in physical things - for David that was taking care of the sheep - is rewarded by spiritual rewards, and faithfulness serving another man’s plans and vision, is rewarded with your own spiritual responsibilities to take care of for God. Faithfulness results in larger assignments of influence and greater responsibilities of leadership.
David grew into a warrior one step at a time: he first fought the lion and the bear, then he fought Goliath, then the Philistines. And that is still how he grows young leaders, one step at a time, one battle at at time.
How do you recognize a David in our midst? 1 Samuel 16
- Don’t look at good looks - verse 7
- Don’t look at his family or race - verses 8-11
- Don’t look for existing recognition - verse 8-9
- Don’t look at his past - verse 11 (keeping the sheep)
- Don’t look at what others look at - verse 3