Wednesday, June 20, 2012



Judges 5:24  Most blessed among women is Jael, The wife of Heber the Kenite; Blessed is she among women in tents.

(The story of Jael … Share the history of Heber’s household and his wife Jael. Tell about the duties of a homemaker in that setting and how keeping the tent ropes tight and the tent pegs secure was Jael’s daily duty. Conclude with the fact that Jael was the perfect person to do this particular job since she had evidently become great in her ordinary, everyday, day in and day out duties. Her ordinary life of pounding tent stakes into the hard ground with “her” hammer prepared her right arm to strike with the confidence, accuracy and strength necessary to insure the kill. It was her hammer and her tent peg and her daily chores which gave Jael this opportunity to be great. Forever she will be remembered and blessed among women in tents!)

Judges 4:21  Then Jael, Heber’s wife, took a tent peg and took a hammer in her hand, and went softly to him and drove the peg into his temple, and it went down into the ground; for he was fast asleep and weary. So he died.

Greatness is seldom achieved because someone does many things well but rather because someone does one thing extremely well. And believe me – there is something which you were born to do extremely well.

There is something you can naturally do better, without much effort, than most of the people around you can do with all their might. God creates each person with purpose and He especially endows each one with natural abilities to complete their purpose.

However, just because you have been given a range of natural abilities which can be sharpened into great abilities does not guarantee you success. God gives us potential but we must prepare ourselves so that we are ready for use in the day of God’s choosing.

Many are called but few are chosen – Matthew 22:14 – why? This is mostly due to the fact that out of the many to whom God has given potential, only a few actually work to reach their God given potential. Others, the many, are either lazily coasting along in the middle of the crowd on their natural abilities or else investing themselves in areas to which they are neither called to nor gifted in.

God gives potential but potential is just potential … potential only guarantees opportunity to excel … however, that opportunity often goes unnoticed because it comes to us in such ordinary ways. Such was the case with Jael …

This truth was also exemplified in the life of David who as a young shepherd boy, doing his daily chores tending the sheep of his father. David testified how he protected them by killing a bear, then a lion, and when given the chance, was prepared to kill Goliath with that same sling.

David was great in his ordinary which prepared him for the extraordinary.

On January 15, 2009, a US Airways Airbus 320 took off from LaGuardia Airport in New York City on a schedule routine flight bound for Charlotte, North Carolina. During the initial climb the Airbus encountered a flock of Canadian geese which upon striking the plane disabled both engines.

Captain Sullenberger quickly decided his best option was to ditch his plane with its 155 passengers and crew, in the Hudson River. With his decision made he informed the Air Traffic Controller and told his passengers to “brace for impact”.

At 3:31pm, this 57 year old airline seasoned pilot from Denison, Texas, performed what has been determined to be the perfect emergency ditching of a plane, landing so smoothly that many onboard felt it to be a better landing than they had previously experienced in planes under normal conditions. All 155 people survived and the plane remained intact.

After every passenger and crew member had exited and was safely away from the plane, Captain Sully walked back through the compartments twice to make sure no one was left behind before leaving himself.

What made this man perform so extraordinarily in such a critical time? When asked that question by CBS News, Captain Sullenberger said:

"One way of looking at this might be that for 42 years, I've been making small, regular deposits in this bank of experience: education and training. And on January 15, the balance was sufficient so that I could make a very large withdrawal."

In other words, he was prepared. What prepared Captain Sully … it was his everyday, day in and day out, hum drum routine of life – just doing the basics over and over again, becoming great in his ordinary … this qualified him to perform when the extraordinary was required.

Years before this incident Captain Sullenberger founded a consulting group aimed at teaching and coaching others to focus on safety, performance and reliability issues. Consistency with respect to daily management is a critical key to long term success and will serve to stabilize during crisis.

There are no shortcuts to success and the person who hopes to be prepared for the truly critical moments we all face in life must recognize the necessity of becoming great in the ordinary. In all of Elijah’s life and ministry there are only yet 7 miracles recorded in the Bible done by Elijah, the great prophet. Even Jesus, though He was the Son of God, lived a regular routine of life which included such repetitive things regularly attending church.

Luke 4:16  So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read.

There are three things I am going to ask you to do on a consistent basis that will help you to become great in your ordinary.

1.   Be content with the ordinary.
2.   Develop a dependable routine of life.
3.   Serve God by helping others.