Written by Dave Lenehan
If you stop and take a brief but close look at Jesus’ disciples, you realize that they weren’t much different from you and me. Four of them were fishermen, one was a hated tax collector. Some of the others, like Thaddeus and Bartholomew, we’ve been given very little information about at all. But Jesus knew these 12 would build His Kingdom and set in motion the Gospel message.
King David was another leader who gathered a rag-tag group of men around him who ultimately became incredible leaders and warriors themselves. Listen to how this group is described in 1 Samuel:
“David left Gath and escaped to the cave of Adullam. When his brothers and all his father’s house heard it, they went down there to him. And everyone who was in distress, everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented gathered to him. So he became captain over them. About four hundred men were with him.” (1 Samuel 22:1-2)
Leadership expert, author and speaker John Maxwell describes David this way: “David’s heart for God made him a great man. But what made him a great leader? I assert that his leadership success had a lot to do with his inner circle. David didn’t wait until he held a leadership position to begin building his inner circle. And some of David’s first followers were misfits. Yet David transformed the people who came to him into a winning team. As David gained experience and grew in his leadership, he continued to attract stronger and stronger people. And he also molded those who came to him into great warriors and leaders. David was an incredible leader and team builder, but in many ways an ordinary person with flaws and failures. Thanks to his inner circle, he became a great ruler. He made his inner circle great, and his inner circle made him great.” (Excerpt from The 21 Most Powerful Minutes in a Leader’s Day by John C. Maxwell)
I like that phrase misfit follower. I know that my sin, my stubborn heart often get it the way of following our leader Jesus like I should. Thanks to his life, his death and his resurrection, He still calls me to be on this incredible Gospel journey with him. Even when I royally mess up, Jesus doesn’t kick me out or walk away from me. He forgives, he heals and he still says, “follow me.”
We are all called to be Jesus’ followers – to be HIS inner circle. He calls us – broken, bruised and “misfitted” as we are. I pray that you also have your own inner circle of misfits: friends, co-workers or comrades who share in this incredible Kingdom journey with you.