Yesterday we started a three part series based on a quote from William Borden’s (1887-1913) Bible, “No reserves. No retreat. No regrets.” In 26 short years of life William lived out his life accordingly. He died 100 years ago, but the passion of his life is a great challenge for us today in the 21st century where many Christians have been lulled into listless, lifeless, legalistic living.
How does one actually live with NO RETREAT? Recently, I have been challenged from various sources about taking risks. I don’t see how one can live with NO RETREAT without the willingness to take risks. As I have been considering this challenge and took a good look at my own life, I realized I have not been much of a risk taker at all. In almost every area of my life I play it safe. How do I live with NO RETREAT if I never leave my comfort zone? The whole idea of NO RETREAT implies pressing forward in the face of a battle or against a challenge, against all odds. That doesn’t happen if we only function in our own little safe circle.
In the very familiar Bible story of David and Goliath, David stepped out of his safe place to bring down the tower of strength of the enemy of his people. Imagine what it must have been like to approach this giant. He probably looked pretty big from a distance when David said, “Let no man’s heart fail because of him; your servant will go and fight with this Philistine” 1 Samuel 17:32. But “he took up his staff in his hand and he chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag, in a pouch he had, and his sling in this hand. And he drew near to the Philistine.” My guess is Goliath looked bigger and bigger with every step David took in his direction. His heart had to be racing as he approached this giant of a man who was taunting David saying, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!” 1 Samuel 17:44.
At any time, David could have turned and run, retreated, and not one of the Israelites would have faulted him for it, since they themselves were already safe on the opposite mountain too afraid to face the giant themselves.
In fact, not only did David not retreat he actually advanced on Goliath. “So it was, when the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, that David hurried and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. 1 Samuel 17:48. I think it is safe to say NO RETREAT characterized David’s life.
How about you? Do you spend more time in your safe place or advancing the Gospel of Jesus Christ? There is risk, no doubt about it. Are you willing to keep moving forward in spite of the challenges life throws at you? Can you honestly say, “I will NOT RETREAT?”
Diane Hunt is part of the Development and Addiction Recovery teams at America’s Keswick. In addition to being a Biblical Counselor, she is a Women’s speaker for retreats, conferences and events. She is a regular writer for Victory Call and one of the authors of Crossing the Jordan Bible Study. She has been married to her husband John over 28 years. She has 2 adult children and 3 grandchildren and 3 adult step-children with 7 grandchildren making 10 in all. She delights reading and teaching, but mostly laughing at the funny things her grandchildren say and do.