But David Strengthened Himself In The Lord His God
Today's Word of Encouragement from Wayne:
"David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him, for all the people were embittered, each one because of his sons and daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God"
1 Samuel 30:6
The enemy had come in with a force, while David and his men were away, "and they took captive the women and all who were in it, both small and great, without killing anyone, and carried them off and went their way" (1 Samuel 30:2). David became the person that everyone was blaming for this terrible loss. What was David to do? Did he contend with the people, or try to work something out, or run away from it all? No. "But David strengthened himself in the Lord." David knew that one day people can praise you and another day the same people can call for your death, but the Lord God remains the same, always blessedly consistent in His Person, presence and purpose.
The first thing David did, which he already knew from practice, was to "strengthen himself in the Lord." David went before the presence of God first, ministering to Him and inquiring of the Lord. This reminds me of the time in the Gospel of John, when "Jesus, perceiving that they were intending to come and take Him by force to make Him king, withdrew again to the mountain by Himself alone" (John 6:15). Rather than contending with people’s forceful passions, and therefore being subject to them, Jesus and David removed themselves and went to be with God first, ministering to the Lord and gaining the strength in God’s presence that produces confidence, focus, wisdom and understanding. By removing themselves and seeking God first, both Jesus and David remained true to themselves in the Lord.
Ministering to the Lord actually strengthens us to be true to ourselves in Jesus Christ. Jesus came back from His time with Abba Father on the mountain strengthened, saying to those who would take Him by force for their own will, "Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves" (John 6: 53). In David’s case, He received strength and direction from God to go "pursue, for you will surely overtake them, and you will surely rescue all" (1 Samuel 30:8). God’s wisdom and direction come to us when we seek Him first, ministering before His presence.
Seeking God first, especially in the hardest of times, always strengthens us in His Spirit and truth. Ministering to the Lord specifically enables us to be true to our new selves, to who we are in Christ Jesus and, just like David and Jesus were strengthened, we are reinforced in Abba Father’s presence to remain true to Him and to walk in His victory as we seek Him first. Amen. We praise Your holy name Lord! May we always seek You first. Hallelujah!