King David, while sheltered in the cave of Adullum, was desperate for some clean water, but leaving his hideout meant risking his life and sending someone else meant risking theirs. Since he gave no orders, his top three warriors decided to take matters into their own hands. Though it required walking through the Philistine camp that surrounded the town of Bethlehem, they left the cave and headed out to get their general some H2O… and he had no idea. The king’s commanders put their lives on the line and faced the possibility of a brutal attack by the enemy for the sake of bringing him a drink. So fiercely loyal were they to their leader, and so respected was he in their ranks, that they were willing to risk it all for his sake. When they returned to the cave — bloodied, bruised, and dirty — they handed him a drink of clean water, which presented yet another occasion for David to show his character as a true man of God (but more about this tomorrow).
Genuine servant leadership inspires radical acts of sacrifice, my friend. Since David forfeited his own comfort for the sake of his troops, they responded in kind. His fiercely loyal comrades were willing to put themselves at risk because they were inspired by his example. Likewise, when you consistently place the needs of those you lead above your own comfort and personal gain, you bring out the best in them, often evoking a courage within that they didn’t know they had. Whether with your team at work, your family, your ministry, or your class, getting in the trenches and laboring shoulder-to-shoulder will strengthen your character and solidify theirs!