posted by Keith Cowart
This is from the book, Gates of Fire. This is the lone survivor of the story of the movie 300 (a great man’s movie by the way). It is based on the story of the 300 Spartans who, according to legend, held off almost 2,000,000 soldiers of the Persian army for 3 days at Thermopylae. The Persian king led his slave warriors off to war and he’d sit far from the battle field, dressed in regal clothes while sitting on an ornate throne. By contrast, the survivor is telling what it means to be a king from what he witnessed his king, Leonidas, do in battle and in life.
I will tell His Majesty what a king is.
A king does not abide within his tent while his men bleed and die upon the field.
A king does not dine while his men go hungry, nor sleep when they stand at watch upon the wall.
A king does not command his men’s loyalty through fear nor purchase it with gold;
He earns their love by the sweat of his own back and the pains he endures for their sake.
That which comprises the harshest burden, a king lifts first and sets down last.
A king does not require service of those he leads but provides it to them.
He serves them, not they him.
You want a concrete picture of what it means to LiveUP? You’ll be hard-pressed to find one much better than that! Is it any wonder that those who followed Leonidas were so willing to die with him?
The challenge to LiveUP involves many things, but certainly one of them is the call to be servant leaders – at home, in the marketplace, in our community, and in our church. We may not feel much like a Leonidas, but here’s the good news: we belong to and follow a King who is even greater! Jesus Christ, the King of Kings!! As we take up our cross and follow Him, He will show us the way; He will fill us with His Spirit; and He will RAISE US UP to be the authentic men He has called us to be.
In this coming Christmas season, this is a great reminder of what the one True King has done for all of us. He served us. He became weak so that we may become strong. He suffered so that we may live. He died and took the punishment fully due for us.
Praise be to the Lord!