Toward the end of King David's life, he ordered a census that angered God. I am not sure what the deal with the census and why it angered God so much - maybe it had something to do with the census represented David relying on his own strength rather than God or something like that. But either way, it displeased God, and as a result more than 70,000 people died!
Here's the first thing. Leadership matters. Godly leadership can lead to an amazing amount of good and many lives can be impacted through Godly leadership. And the opposite is true. Poor leadership has devastating impact on the life of a community. There is much at stake in terms of Godly leadership. We know all too well when leaders have abused their power, when leaders have fallen morally, when leaders have failed to lead and the devastating impact this can have on the church. Leadership absolutely matters.
Finally, God can't bear to watch the suffering anymore and he calls off the angel from extending his hand over Jerusalem. God then tells David to build an altar to make a sacrifice. And when Araunah (the property owner of the land where David was told to make a sacrifice) saw that his king was in need of his land, he offered his land and oxen for the burnt offering to the king. After all, this was the right of the king. But listen to David's reply, "No. I've got to buy it from you for a good price; I'm not going to offer God, my God, sacrifices that are no sacrifice" (2 Samuel 24:24).
I'm not going to offer God, my God, sacrifices that are no sacrifice.
When it comes to serving God and giving to Gods Kingdom, when was the last time that I was willing to sacrifice something that was a sacrifice to me? When was the last time that I was willing to pay the price for becoming the leader that I am capable of being? When was the last time that I was willing to pay a price for being the man of God that God wants me to be?
We will reap what we sow. Is it any wonder that so few of us are experiencing the dynamic power of God present in Jesus Christ through His church? Where are the revivals? Where are the transformed lives? Where are the Godly leaders?
Could it be that too few are willing to pay the cost of Godly leadership?
It is my prayer that you and I will join in God's kingdom revolution - that we would lay down our life and pay the cost to be effective leaders for God and His church. There is too much at stake.
When it's all said and done, it's perfectly fine for people to say that James was not the greatest leader of his generation. However, it will be unacceptable if people didn't say of me, "That dude was one fully devoted guy to Jesus Christ." The outcome of my service to God's kingdom is up to God. But my effort and zeal for the kingdom of God is up to me. I don't have to be the best, but I better have given my best!