One day, God gave me an insight. We live in momentous times and as Christians, we know that Christ has given us the victory as far as receiving eternal life versus eternal death. That is the incredible hope we have yet we’re still in a cosmic battle of immense proportions until our King’s soon coming return. Our war is with the spiritual realm as it manifests itself into the physical (II Cor.10:4). That is the true reality.
But knowing we are still spiritual-physical creations, the Lord gave me an image of a chessboard one day. For those of you who know a little about chess, every chess piece is not better than the other but they all hold different positions, responsibilities and maneuvering capabilities. They all sit on the same playing field. So in that sense, a puny pawn, if moved into the right position, at the right time and right place, can literally checkmate your opposition’s King and win the game. In the same light, if you’re finally able to move your pawn to your opponent’s end zone, your pawn is made a Queen and given all the powers attributed to that powerful position.
To an amateur chess player, pawns are viewed as expendable and not that valuable. They’re very limited in their mobility and physically, they’re the smallest piece on the whole chessboard. As Christians, that’s the way the world views us as well but that’s not how God the Father sees us and He has control over the whole cosmic Board! It doesn’t matter if we’ve been called to be a rook, bishop, knight or pawn – each has invaluable worth and together we fulfill His plan by being fully prepared and obedient. We prepare ourselves to listen to His voice, wait upon His call and then move. We don’t question why a nearby rook, bishop or knight is standing still or jumping from here to there. We just follow the Lord’s lead and in time we see His great master plan. Even when it seems as if we’re surrounded by the enemy, we hold our position in faith, knowing that in God’s realm, He has us protected and covered.
At the start of most chess games, the pawn sees a lot of action and is moved out quickly but during the course of the game, it oftentimes just sits and sits while other pieces move to and fro, advancing and taking the territory. After a few hours, the pawn may think, “Have you forgotten me? I know I’m a pawn but come on!”
Let’s just look at a few “pawns” in the Bible and see how they were positioned to obediently respond and ultimately assist Jesus into His checkmate position on the Cross.
- Pharaoh’s daughter, who was by the river at the right time and the right place to pickup baby Moses floating downstream.
- Joshua and Caleb, who both moved into the Promised Land despite the report of giants in the land.
- David, the shepherd boy, who patiently waited for the Lord to move him into position to anoint him King of Israel.
- Mary, an obscure peasant girl, who when in shock discovered she was carrying the Messiah said in faith, “Behold, I am the handmaiden of the Lord; let it be done to me according to what you have said.” (Luke 1:38).
- And last but not least – Israel. A country no larger than the size of New Jersey and for millennia, surrounded by enemies; it’s considered a disposable pawn to the world but a kingpin in God’s great redemptive plan (Deut. 7:7).
Yes, God uses everyone on His chessboard to His glory and although you may at times feel like a pawn, you are a King or Queen in God’s eyes. Tiny but mighty!
So like the “pawns of old,” may we prepare ourselves daily so when our Lord desires to move us strategically, we in faith will respond. Our King knows the entire game plan. Trust Him!
One small step for God is one eternal step for mankind.