“And David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because all the people were bitter in soul, each for his sons and daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God.”
1 SAMUEL 30:6
Read 1 Samuel 27:1-7, 29:6-8, 30:1-6
We hear in church the declaration, “God is good” and people reply, “all the time”. It is truth but not often said in time of despair. David was distressed, and many of us would be in the circumstances he found himself in. He experienced frustration with relationships, poor leadership decisions resulting in families being affected, rejection, wrong allegiance, rebellion, loss of his home, his wife and children taken and he had neglected his time with God. He didn’t resemble the figure who killed the lion, bear and Goliath. We can all find ourselves in tough circumstances, sometimes brought on by our own choices.
But in midst of being distressed, David knew the character of God. His journey had demonstrated that God is good. David had experienced God’s grace and knew the distress was not from God. He knew that his strength came from the Lord. He got honest with God and had a real, vulnerable conversation with the One who he knew loved him. He wept, repented, listened and reminded himself of God’s goodness.
David’s priority to strengthen himself was intimacy with God before doing anything else.
As a believer in Christ, a new creation, we have been given, “all things that pertain to life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3). We have also been blessed, “with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places” in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 1:3). Therefore, in times of despair we need to remind ourselves of who lives in us. “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)
God is in you. The fullness of Christ dwells in you as a believer. Consider this truth, that God Himself desired to make His home in you. There is no circumstance that He is unable to strengthen you in, restore you from and see life flow. It is my responsibility, as David demonstrated, to strengthen myself first in the Lord. Yes, get others around you to pray for you, go to Church, go to Life Group, but I have to decide, based on the truth of my position in Christ, to access that strength which He has already given me.
· Remember your enemy “comes only to steal and kill and destroy” (John 10:10)
· Declare over yourself who you are in Christ.
· Remember to live by what is written in the Word, not what the circumstances are.
· Read your Bible and take time to meditate on it. Let it become part of you and “keep [it] within your heart” (Proverbs 4:21)
· Take time to pray, talk to God and have a conversation Him.
· Having done all stand on the truth.
Author: Heath Van Staden - Lead Elder, Liberty Church, Newport