Chasing your 500 lbs dream: Series: Chase the Lion

Chasing your 500 lbs dream: Series: Chase the Lion

Chase the Lion: If Your Dream Doesn’t Scare You, It’s Too Small
Based on the book, Chase the Lion: If Your Dream Doesn’t Scare You, It’s Too Small by Mark Batterson (Colorado Springs, CO: Multnomah, 2016)

Big Idea of the Series: When the image of a man-eating beast travels through the optic nerve and into the visual cortex, the brain sends the body an urgent message: run! That’s what normal people do, but not lion chasers. Rather than seeing a five-hundred-pound problem, they see an opportunity for God to show up and show His power.

Has God given you a HUGE dream for you church? Has He given you a HUGE dream for your community?

This is what Chase the Lion is all about.

Centering on II Samuel 23, Chase the Lion tells the true story of an ancient warrior named Benaiah who chased a lion into a pit on a snowy day—and then killed it. This series also recounts the miraculous stories of David’s other mighty men, and their exploits for the Kingdom of Israel.

The goal of the series is to help us unleash the faith and courage we need to identify, chase, and catch the five-hundred-pound dreams God has given us to reach the world.

Big Idea of the Message: “The only way to tap your God-given potential, to fulfill your God-ordained destiny, is to chase five-hundred-pound lions.”

 “By definition, a God-sized dream will be beyond your ability, beyond your resources. Unless God does it, it can’t be done! And that is precisely how God gets the glory.” (5)

2 Samuel 23 gives us the record of David’s mighty men. Without these mighty men, David will not realize his God given destiny of becoming the greatest king of Israel. Many great men and women in history and present time would not realize their destiny without the people that supported them. I would not be here today without the committed men and women who supported my leadership for the last 15 years.

Today, we are going to focus on one them. Benaiah

20 And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was a valiant man of Kabzeel, a doer of great deeds. He struck down two ariels of Moab. He also went down and struck down a lion in a pit on a day when snow had fallen. 21 And he struck down an Egyptian, a handsome man. The Egyptian had a spear in his hand, but Benaiah went down to him with a staff and snatched the spear out of the Egyptian’s hand and killed him with his own spear. 22 These things did Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and won a name beside the three mighty men. 23 He was renowned among the thirty, but he did not attain to the three. And David set him over his bodyguard.    

a. Who is Benaiah?

The son of Jehoiada a valiant man of Kabzeel, a doer of great deeds

Jehoiada was raised by a valiant man and doer of great deeds. His father was the great influence in his life. 

b. His exploits.

Three of them were recorded but I think they were many.

a.   Killed two ariels of Moab, lion like men, champions, mighty warriors

b.   Killed a huge Egyptian by taking his own spear in his hand

c.   Killed a lion. He chased the lion on all the way to the pit on a snowy day.

i.    The object - The Lion

Mass: Male: 190 kg - 420-500lbs

Height: Male: 1.2 m - 4ft

Length: Male: 1.7 – 2.5 m - 8ft

Speed: 80 km/h

ii.   The location - Pit, a tight enclosed space.

iii.  The weather condition - Snowy day

This act of courage completely changed the direction of Benaiah’s life

b. His Heroics landed him the job of personal body guard of King David

The same is true of you. You are one idea away, one decision away from a totally different life. of course, it’ll be the toughest decision you ever make, the scariest risk you ever take. If you’re dream doesn’t scare you, it’s too small.

“The only way to tap your God-given potential, to fulfill your God-ordained destiny, is to chase five-hundred-pound lions.”

Chasing your 500 lbs dream starts with God:

I.  God is the giver of dream that’s worth living and dying for

a. God gave Abram - Abraham dream

Genesis 12:1 ESV Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you.

b. God gave Joseph (the dreamer) a dream

Genesis 37:5–8 ESV Now Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers they hated him even more. He said to them, “Hear this dream that I have dreamed: Behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and behold, my sheaf arose and stood upright. And behold, your sheaves gathered around it and bowed down to my sheaf.” His brothers said to him, “Are you indeed to reign over us? Or are you indeed to rule over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words.

c. God gave Moses a dream

Exodus 3:4–10 ESV When the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then he said, “Do not come near; take your sandals off your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” And he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God. Then the Lord said, “I have surely seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt and have heard their cry because of their taskmasters. I know their sufferings, and I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land to a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. And now, behold, the cry of the people of Israel has come to me, and I have also seen the oppression with which the Egyptians oppress them. Come, I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring my people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.”

d. God gave David the dream to build a house for the Lord

1 Kings 8:17–18 ESV Now it was in the heart of David my father to build a house for the name of the Lord, the God of Israel. But the Lord said to David my father, ‘Whereas it was in your heart to build a house for my name, you did well that it was in your heart.

e. God promise that he will give dreams in the last days

Acts 2:17 ESV “ ‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams;

The last days are not just in the distant future but were inaugurated at Pentecost and will continue until Christ’s return.

God is looking for people whose heart is aligned to his heart

2 Chronicles 16:9 ESV For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward him. You have done foolishly in this, for from now on you will have wars.”

A blameless heart is one that delight in the Lord

Psalm 37:4 ESV Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.

To delight is to take pleasure, to be satisfied in God alone.

Psalm 40:8 ESV I delight to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart.”

Delighting in God start with His word in our heart

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

Having our heart aligned with God’s heart, we now can claim Jesus words in the sermon on the Mount:

Matthew 7:7–11 ESV “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!

But a heart aligned to this world end up in hostility with God

James 4:1–4 ESV What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

God is the giver of every good and perfect gift.

James 1:17 ESV Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.

God gives dream not only to benefit us but ultimately for the glory of His name.

What dreams are you pursuing today? Is that dream aligning with the Word of God? or is it align with the world?


Not only God is the giver of dreams worth living or dying for:

II. Your Identity will determine your destiny

How will you answer this question?

Who are you? The common answer, you will give your name, the family you belong too, your work, your hobby...

•    When God gave Abram a dream - He also changed his name to Abraham

•    When God gave Jacob a dream - He also changed his name to Israel

•    When God gave Saul a dream - He also changed his name to Paul

•    Your destiny is tied of identity. Your Identity determines your destiny

•    The only way you can enter heaven is through a change of identity

John 1:12–13 ESV But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

What matters to you at the end of the day or the end of your life?

Is it your title, your accomplishments, your possessions, your educations? Listen to what the wise king Solomon wrote.

Ecclesiastes 1:1–17 ESV The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity. What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun? A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever. The sun rises, and the sun goes down, and hastens to the place where it rises. The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north; around and around goes the wind, and on its circuits the wind returns. All streams run to the sea, but the sea is not full; to the place where the streams flow, there they flow again. All things are full of weariness; a man cannot utter it; the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing. What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun. Is there a thing of which it is said, “See, this is new”? It has been already in the ages before us. There is no remembrance of former things, nor will there be any remembrance of later things yet to be among those who come after. I the Preacher have been king over Israel in Jerusalem. And I applied my heart to seek and to search out by wisdom all that is done under heaven. It is an unhappy business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. I have seen everything that is done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a striving after wind. What is crooked cannot be made straight, and what is lacking cannot be counted. I said in my heart, “I have acquired great wisdom, surpassing all who were over Jerusalem before me, and my heart has had great experience of wisdom and knowledge.” And I applied my heart to know wisdom and to know madness and folly. I perceived that this also is but a striving after wind.

Vanity, vanity, everything is vanity....

When you receive the Gospel in your life, God gives you a new identity.

2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

Who am I in Christ?

I Am accepted in Christ

I am God’s child, I am Christ’s friend, I have been justified, I am united with the Lord and one with Him in the Spirit, I have been bought with a price, I belong to Him, I am member of Christ body, I am a saint, I have direct access to God, I have been redeemed and forgiven of all my sins, I am complete in Christ

I am secure in Christ

I am free from forever from condemnation, I am assured that all things work together for good, I cannot be separated from the love of God, I’m confident that God will complete what he has started in my life, I am born of God and the evil cannot touch me

I am significant in Christ

I have a purpose to live and die for, I am the salt and light of the earth, I am Christ ambassador, I am God’s temple, I am commissioned by Christ, I can do all things through Christ who strengthen me 

He also gave His Spirit

Ephesians 1:13 ESV In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,

The presence of the Holy Spirit in us bring spiritual gift(s)

Romans 12:6–8 ESV

Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.

God’s dream workshand in hand with the Holy Spirit that lives in us.

Philippians 4:13 ESV I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

Philippians 1:21 ESV For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.


III. Your Life is to short to be wasted

James 4:14 ESV

yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.

At the end of our lives, our greatest regrets will be the God-ordained opportunities we left on the table, the God-given passions we didn’t pursue, and the God sized dreams we didn’t go after because we let fear dictate us.

A study by social psychologists Tom Gilovich and Vicki Medvec found that in the short term, we tend to regret actions more than inactions 53% to 47%. But over the long haul, inaction regrets outnumber action regrets 84% to 16%.

You need to quit living if your purpose in life is to arrive safely to death. Let’s stop pointing out problems and become part of the solution. Stop repeating the past and start creating future. Face your fears and fight for your dreams.

“Too often the church complains about culture instead of creating it. The energy we spend on criticism is being stolen from creativity. It’s sideways energy. We need fewer commentators and more innovators.” (16)

Live like today is the first and last day of your life.

We need to courage the two o’clock in the morning courage

QUOTE: “Napoleon Bonaparte made a distinction between two kinds of courage—regular courage and two-o’clock-in-the-morning courage. ‘The rarest attribute among Generals,’ said the Little Corporal, ‘is two o’clock-in-the-morning courage.’” (1) Fulfilling God’s calling on your life requires two-o’clock-in-the-morning courage.

Chapter two of Chase the Lion recounts the story of Wilbur and Orville Wright. Considered impossible by many, the Wright brothers changed history when they paved the way for human flight. “At any given moment on any given day, five thousand airplanes carrying a million passengers are flying through the troposphere at three hundred miles per hour. And it all started with a dream. It always does. Wilbur Wright repented of his unbelief in the possibility of human flight, and the rest is history.”

When do we start chasing our 500 lbs dream? Today!

If you’re waiting for perfect conditions to pursue your dream, you’ll be waiting until Christ returns. It doesn’t matter whether a sunny day or a snowy day is forecast.

1. God is the giver of dreams that is worth living and dying for

2. Your identity will determine your destiny

3. Your Life is to short to be wasted


Let me share to you our three 500 lbs dream for the next three years

1. For us to be RISK takers in sharing the Gospel - EVANGELISM

2. For us to be REDISCOVER our first love - Christ - DISCIPLESHIP

3. For us to RELEASE unprecedented amount of compassion into the broken world. - MISSION



“The only way to tap your God-given potential, to fulfill your God-ordained destiny, is to chase five-hundred-pound lions.”

As we close this message, I want to challenge you to commit to chasing their God-given destiny. Don’t be ruled by fear. Be ruled by the power of God. What can they do this week to begin chasing their dream? We have many graduate this year.

•    Spiritual growth - Daily devotion, Prayer life, Reading the Bible, Sharing your faith to others

•    Personal growth (education, work, health)

•    Church - service, advancing our mission

•    Relationships (marriage, family) - restoration, forgiveness

•    Community - practical expression of love


Discussion Questions:


1.           What is one thing that stood out to you from this week’s message?

2.          What’s a dream that God has given you?

3.          What’s one thing you fear the most about this dream?

4.          How does God get the glory for helping us to achieve impossible dreams?

5.          What’s one thing you can do this week to pursue your God-given dream?

6.         How can I pray for you?





Living Hope