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The Wheel of Valor

John Smith

I want to share an illustration with you that shows an easy way to think about being followers of Jesus.

I learned this from the Navigators Ministry and give them all credit for the illustration and this material.  Think of a wagon wheel with a center hub, four spokes, and an outer rim. Every part of the wheel represents a crucial component of a man of valor’s strong Christian life.

The Center Hub: Our Understanding of Ourselves    

The first step in becoming a new man is understanding we are sinners and need a savior and then surrendering ourselves to Jesus, asking Him to be our Lord and Savior. When we do that, we are a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17).

When we ask Jesus to be our Savior, His Holy Spirit takes up residence in our life, and our life from that moment is meant to be a life of faith. 

Galatians 2:20 states, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (ESV).

How can we live a life of faith?  By knowing that Jesus loves us more than we can possibly imagine. His death proves that. Through our faith in Jesus’ death and resurrection, He offered us the chance to restore our relationship to God. That restoration then makes us fellow heirs with Christ. As mighty men of valor, we have the Lord with us (Judges 6:12) and everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3).

The First Vertical Spoke: The Word (The Bible)

God uses His word to speak to us directly. His Word (the Bible) reveals who He is and how He calls us to live and interact with those around us.

We read in Joshua 1:8, “This Book…shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success” (ESV).

2 Timothy 3:16 proclaims, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (ESV).

2 Peter 1:3 also states that we have been given everything through the knowledge of Him. As men of valor, we must be reading the Bible; thinking about it; meditating on it; and being taught, reproved, corrected, and trained by it. God will honor our investment of time in His Word.

The Second Vertical Spoke: Prayer

Prayer is our natural response to God as we hear Him speak to us through His word and the sharing of what’s on our heart with Him.

John 15:7 declares, “If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you” (ESV).

Abide means to take up residence, so God wants us to dwell with Him. When we do that, we will ask for the things that He wants, the things that will bring Him glory—not for things that bring us glory or to meet our selfish desires.

When we lift up our burdens, concerns, and requests to God, we can be at peace, knowing that God who loves us more than we can possibly imagine will work out all things in the best way for His glory (Philippians 4:6-7).

The First Horizontal Spoke: Fellowship

Fellowship (connection, friendship, togetherness) is essential if we hope to walk with God for a lifetime. When men of valor do not stand together to strengthen one another’s hand in God (1 Samuel 23:15-16), it is only a matter of time before we fall away from God.

Hebrews 10:24-25 says, “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near” (ESV).

It is important for men of valor to meet to encourage one another and help each other walk with God. The enemy wants to divide and isolate us, but we must always come together in close friendship and fellowship—especially as life gets more difficult.

As Matthew 18:20 asserts, “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them” (ESV).

God is with us all the time, but He calls special attention to the times when we gather. He wants us to know that there is power when two or more believers meet for fellowship and prayer in His name.

The Second Horizontal Spoke: Witnessing

After Jesus rose from the dead and ascended into Heaven, He gave us His Holy Spirit, calling us to be His witnesses and ambassadors until He returns. We can do this in His strength as we follow God’s pattern of self-sacrificial love that seeks the best for those around us.

Romans 1:16 says, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek” (ESV).

Since men of valor are not ashamed of their faith, sharing it is a natural overflow of a strong relationship with God.

The Rim: Obedience

Obedience is a man of valor’s life in action. Some acts of our obedience to God are seen in our inner life, such as our attitudes, and habits, and values. Other acts of obedience are seen outwardly, such as in how we treat and love others.

In John 14:15, we learn that the way we demonstrate our love for Jesus is by keeping His commandments—summed up in loving God, loving our neighbor, and loving each other.  We obey His commandments not to prove our love for Him or to earn our salvation, but because we want to. 

A Well-Balanced Wheel

Like a tire that is fully inflated and rolls easily, so is a Christian life that is balanced.  When one of our spokes is out of balance or missing, then our Christian wheel is a little flat. Rolling through life is not so easy. When we have multiple spokes out of balance, then our Christian wheel is very flat, and we are unlikely to go very far in our faith. Knowing the Lord is with him and with Christ at his center, a man of valor lives a balanced life Bible reading, prayer, fellowship, witnessing, and obedience.

Author

  • John Smith

    John Smith is a retired Air Force officer and is currently serving as a contractor in support of the Air Force. He is a member of the special MOV discipleship team to Kenya.

John Smith
John Smith is a retired Air Force officer and is currently serving as a contractor in support of the Air Force. He is a member of the special MOV discipleship team to Kenya.
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