By Doug Bing, Washington Conference president
A conversation at a fellowship meal after church recently caught my attention.
The couple I shared the meal with told me about one of their sons who is a military officer working on a ship. Their son had told them some of his duties and responsibilities as he was able to tell them about his work.
They spoke with amazement and pride about how, at a young age, he was entrusted to operate and command multi-million dollar equipment in very complex operations. This is true all throughout the military as well as many other organizations.
In 1 Kings, I am reminded about the story of King Ahab and some young leaders. Ahab was a very evil king. He seemed to delight in doing everything that was opposed to God’s will.
Yet when the nation of Israel was in crisis and in danger of being overrun, God sent a prophet to talk to him and amazingly Ahab listened to what the prophet told him to do.
The story unfolds in 1 Kings 20. The prophet told Ahab that God would destroy the forces set to destroy Israel. Ahab asked in verse 14 “But who will do this?” The prophet said, “The junior officers under the provincial commanders will do it.” Other versions say “the young leaders” will do it. The prophet also tells Ahab that he would be the one to start the battle.
Ahab listens to the prophet and rallies all the young leaders in the nation. The army is rallied and readied for battle. When the day for battle came, Ahab sent the young leaders out first followed by the rest of the army. A great battle was won that day and Israel was not overtaken by their enemies.
There is much to be learned from this story. First, God continues to try to speak even to evil rulers to try and get them to see Him as God. Second, God wants to work through young leaders and wants the more experienced to keep handing them the responsibility to do what God has called them to do. He doesn’t say leave them out by themselves. He said that they will lead as they team up with others who have gone before.
In Washington Conference, we believe in coaching leaders and then giving the keys to those young leaders and working with them as they fight the battles against the forces of evil that surround us. This week, join me in praying about coaching someone and working together to share God’s gift of hope and wholeness right here in western Washington and beyond.