When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus. But since they could see the man who had been healed standing there with them, there was nothing they could say. So they ordered them to withdraw from the Sanhedrin and then conferred together. “What are we going to do with these men?” they asked. “Everyone living in Jerusalem knows they have performed a notable sign, and we cannot deny it. But to stop this thing from spreading any further among the people, we must warn them to speak no longer to anyone in this name.”
Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied, “Which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”
After further threats they let them go. They could not decide how to punish them, because all the people were praising God for what had happened. For the man who was miraculously healed was over forty years old. Acts 4:13-22
He had a very long name. He lived his entire life in reckless abandon for the adventure. He was an adventure seeker and he looked for it even in the mundane. He was one of those people that just knew he was not going to die. He was a leader by example and was unorthodox in his approach to his career. His name was John Malcolm Thorpe Fleming Churchill, Mad Jack for short or Fighting Jack Churchill.
The reason for the nick names were because he was a professional soldier. He is one of the unsung hero’s of World War 2. He is a fine example of reckless abandon, which is living our life to it’s fullest and taking any challenge head on without regard to your own life. You also have the confidence you are going to make it through that challenge unscathed. Time and again Mad Jack showed his tenacity for being an over comer of very harrowing experiences. Before the war in Burma he road his motorcycle 500 miles, which is no real feat, but when you throw in the idea that he did it off road and along the railroad you get an idea of how unconventional this man was. He even had to walk the motorcycle across the bridges on a rail to make it across rivers and streams.
Another interesting fact about Mad Jack was he always had three things he took into battle with him, 1. His longbow and a quiver of arrows. 2. His Scottish Claymore (a long double edged two handed sword). 3. His bagpipes. You would think he was geared up to fight for William Wallace not Field Marshall Montgomery. There is an interesting story that goes with each of these different pieces of battle equipment. The first one deals with the claymore. During the Salerno invasion in 1943 Mad Jack and Corporal Ruffell took 42 prisoners with their own personal weapons and a mortar squad and lead them back to the British line with just his claymore sword. How crazy was this guy? If you are interested you can read this account and more in this URL: http://www.wwiihistorymagazine.com/2005/july/col-profiles.html.
The next story involves his longbow. In may of 1940 to signal an attack Mad Jack used his longbow and took out one German officer with a shot through the chest. His men then finished off the rest of the squad. His antics really were very much a way to confuse the enemy and he did it very well. The last story is with his bag pipes of course. In May of 1944 Mad Jack had a handful of defenders left after a failed attempt to take a hill resulted in him being surrounded. They defended the hill as best that they could and finally ran out of ammunition. The rest of his men were killed by grenades. He took to his bag pipes and played “Will ye no come back again” and was rendered unconscious by a nearby grenade going off from the Germans. He was then taken prisoner by them. You can read more about this at the above URL, it’s a very interesting story what follows, but not for this blog.
I tell you about this interesting man to show how we can live our lives in reckless abandoned to God. The difference between Mad Jack’s reckless abandon and us is we already know our outcome. We can take risks for Christ because no matter the cost we will prevail. Mad Jack had no concept as to how his adventures would turn out, the only thing he had going for him was raw courage, just a touch of craziness and a sense of adventure. If we use all three of those traits in our ministry for God, then we can achieve a great deal of great things in our lifetime.
The scripture above shows us a biblical example of reckless abandon. Peter and John basically said to the same people that had Jesus killed, that they cannot shut up about our Lord and Savior. They had experience the love of God so strongly that they had to pass on this good news. Good news is not something to be kept to you; it’s made to be passed on. You can’t hide from it and you really can’t hide it if you really have it. What makes us strong is God courage, godly craziness and a sense of godly adventure. These men paid the ultimate price for their reckless abandon. We should be taking our crosses up daily in reckless abandon; it may cost us our life, but what a way to live.
© [David Howard], [David’s Body Temple], 2011-2015.