Samson got a haircut. And the power he knew, and had taken for granted, was gone. Of course, the issue was a heart issue. The haircut was just symbolic of an inward rebellion against the vow he had taken years before. And in a weak moment of temptation, he cashed in all of his power for a few moments of indulgence. What man in his right mind would ever do something like that?
A man just like me.
We all know what it’s like to fall short. We’ve done so many times. But this was more than that. This was Peyton Manning fumbling at the goal line when no one hit him; Michael Jordan missing a layup and blowing the championship game; Superman putting the kryptonite in his own pocket.
This was God’s man – chosen and anointed – choosing to forfeit the very power that enabled him to defeat the enemies of God. When we read Judges 16 we want to scream at the page, “Don’t do it Samson! Don’t throw it all away for this!” But we can’t. And he does. And the rest, they say, is history.
Sure, in the end, God’s man wins one final victory for the people of God. But think about all the years and victories forfeited. We’re grateful for the outcome, but we can’t help but feel as though the great power of Samson was somehow wasted.
There has to be a few lessons for the rest of us. Here’s a few to consider:
- If we aren’t careful, we will take God’s power on our ministries for granted.
- In a weak moment, we can choose to forfeit His hand on our lives for a fleeting indulgence.
- God can redeem our worst mistakes and even use us again, but we cannot regain what is lost.
- We are just as vulnerable to “hair appointments” in our lives as Samson was.
As my friend Scott White, of FBC Woodstock, often says, “We’ve got to stay ‘close and clean’ if we are to know God’s hand on our work.”
In other words, we’ve got to stay away from scissors.