By: Darrelyn L. TuttAnd David was greatly distressed for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved; every man for his sons and for his daughters; but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.1 Samuel 30:6Today's Read: 1 Samuel 27-30; Psalm 73------Considerations and consolations for today: When we are hard-pressed, oppressed, and suppressed, God is able to express Himself wonderfully in our hour.This strange and unusual chapter of David's life finds him in temporary alliance with the Philistines. In an effort to steer clear of Saul and his murderous threats and frequent bouts of insanity, David flees for his life from Saul and finds temporary refuge with the nearby Philistines. While he is looked upon with a leery eye by many of the Philistine officers, he is graciously supplied by the King, for political reasons I believe, a place among them.Ziklag was his assigned abode (1 Samuel 27:6) and its Hebrew root word means "to press." Hmmm ...A fitting term for Davids conflicted "pressed" soul and the city which housed him.He is discharged from a military campaign by the Philistine King and sent "home" to Ziklag where he finds his new little city ravaged by the Amalekites.Things seem to go from bad to worse for David, and the men who are with him and in league with him turn quickly on him and blame him for the savage burning of the city and captivity of their people. David is profoundly and personally affected by this tragedy and both of his wives are amongst the captives taken by the Amalekites.It's a messy deal and a messy season in David's life;There is no easy discourse and there appears no easy solution.Life is just buggerishly hard for our beautiful David ... for a season.The "anointed and appointed" soon-to-be-King had extraordinary pressures and unbelievable battles to face in every arena of life before his Kingship and "crowning" ever occurred. God's goal in David's life was not ease and comfort but reliance on Him and relationship with Him;This is what was forged in David's difficult moments.God had not left "His" man;He was simply growing His man.He was fostering and forging needful "kingly" traits in David that would, in the future, surface and remind him of God's sure and utter faithfulness when everything and everyone around him scattered and fled.David developed a distinct and satisfying intimacy with God, that few men come close to, because he kept running to God and turning to God in his despair. In the end, David's example spurs our own hearts to follow his footprints in our distress and periods of duress, and seek after the only One who has the authority, power, and strength to deliver us, offer us true hope, and provide us with internal and eternal consolation.Read and reflect on the weightiness of "relationship" bound into this story and you'll be inspired to trust God at a different and deeper level.Make Christ "your" refuge ...It is the key to becoming a man/woman after God's own heart.------Be Thou my strong habitation whereunto I may continually resort; Thou hast given commandment to save me; for Thou art my rock and my fortress.Psalm 71:3
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