Read 1 Samuel 27-31 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+samuel+27-31&version=NIV
While today’s reading covered the final decisions and actions of King Saul I’m more interested in reflecting on David in chapter 30. After retreating to the land of the Philistines to evade Saul (Sam 27:1) David amalgamated his warriors into the occupying-military till he was nobly discharged from service (Sam 29:6-11). After which he moved his people south to set up a temporary camp at Ziklag.
After a day away, upon returning to camp David found their village had been raided, pillaged, and plundered. All the women and children had been captured. Emotions were tense. The men, including David, ‘wept aloud until they had no strength left to weep’ (30:4). If the emotional pain of bereavement was not suffice, the men who had followed David all this way began to doubt His leadership with whispers of potential mutiny and murder (30:6). It is in this snapshot we see a picture of how to lead. We are told simply, despite everything going on, ‘David found strength in the Lord his God’ (30:6). God is a source of strength. He is there for us if only we would go to Him and ask for help. As the old hymn goes: 'What a friend we have in Jesus, All our sins and griefs to bear, what a privilege it is to carry, Everything to God in prayer, Oh, what peace we often forfeit, Oh, what needless pain we bear, All because we do not carry, Everything to God in prayer’. This is pure speculation on my behalf, but I wonder if it was during this time David penned the famous Psalm 23.
After recharging through the strength God provided, David was able to providentially lead the men that grumbled over his life and leadership back into the arms of their previously captured loved ones. Upon return, naturally, arguments broke out over who should get a percentage of plundered goods but David demanded it is shared equally, stating; ‘No, my brothers, you must not do that with what the Lord has given us. He has protected us and handed over to us the forces that came against us. God has protected us and handed over to us the forces that came against us… The share of the man who stayed with the supplies is to be the same as that of him who went down to the battle. All will share alike” (30:23-24). David knew it was through God that bad was turned into good. He remembered to give thanks to God for making it possible. And so it is within the Church. We all share in the work and share in the reward, despite having different roles. There is no favouritism with God, we should aim to complement each other in all we do. The reward? A relationship with God himself. Jesus said Himself; “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (John 13:35).
Looking forward, spend a moment in prayer with God, make a decision to turn to Him to find the strength you need to power through. When prayer is answered remember to remember God and rejoice in the victory with your Church family.
Take it further with:
Scripture: Psalm 23: (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm+23&version=NIV)
Scripture: 1 Corinthians 3:5-9: (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+cor+3%3A5-9&version=NIV)
Song: What a friend we have in Jesus (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+20&version=NIV)