Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Then it happened when the Philistine rose and came and drew near to meet David, that David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine.
Then his servants said to him, 'What is this thing that you have done? While the child was alive, you fasted and wept; but when the child died, you arose and ate food.' He said, 'While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept; for I said, 'Who knows, the Lord may be gracious to me, that the child may live.' But now he has died; why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me.'
David was a man of advancement. He looked forward and walked straight, because 'A man of understanding walks straight' (Proverbs 15:21).
When David was a small shepherd, he ran to face a giant bully. He wasn't concerned with failure, because a front Man ran before him.* David's victory brought a glory that continues to grow; his determined dash would inspire the charge of millions.
But once, 'At the time when the kings go out to war' (2 Samuel 11:1), David stayed in to sin. He stopped advancing and got cozy with Bathsheba. God forgave him--but their first son was stricken.
During the baby's illness, David fasted and prayed. When the child died, David focused on the path ahead, instead of the loss behind.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: David's destiny was advancement. He was the forerunner of Jesus. Like him, your destiny is advancement, and you are the forerunners of His second coming. Your mission?
To 'Get up and come forward!' (Mark 3:3); to 'Prepare the way of the Lord' (Isaiah 40:3); to 'Make His paths straight' (Mark 1:3); to 'Go into all the world and preach' (Mark 16:15); to 'Go and make disciples of all nations' (Matthew 28:19); to 'Look straight ahead' (Proverbs 4:25).
To stand up and act up. To model, sing and dance up. To clear up the confusion about Who He is. So don't join the lock up in churches, and don't settle down in comfort. Because down is not the direction of a performer. Instead, it is up, out and forward.
Don't look back at losses. Follow your Leader. Rise and shine.
## Valiant Like David: Advancement (Part 12)
* 'The Lord is the One Who goes ahead of you; He will be with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed' (Deuteronomy 31:8).
NOTE: This series is a republished edit of a 2014 series called, Valiant Like David. In these devotions, you may see notes to 'Actors, Models & Talent for Christ.' I have not changed this designation. Because in a greater sense, every disciple of Christ acts for Christ, models Christ and stewards His talents, from which God expects a profit.
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Valiant! Like David series.