Strengthening Ourselves in the Lord, Part 1

David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him;
each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters.
But David found strength in the LORD his God. ~ I Samuel 30:6

READING: I Samuel 30

In most church plants, there come crisis moments similar to this episode
in David’s life when he juggled deep personal distress and the mutinous
wrath of followers who wanted to stone him. Setbacks – sometimes
staggering setbacks – are a fact of life in church planting. These
crisis times test our mettle as leaders.

What saved the day for David and his followers is that David acted like a
godly leader instead of getting swept up in the momentary angst.
Although David was every bit as distressed as his men, he turned to
God and found strength in Him.

What exactly did David do? We can make a pretty accurate guess that
he didn’t immediately ask God for guidance because it’s not until
after he found strength (here in verse 6) that he inquired of the
Lord (in verse 7). No, if we look for clues in many of David’s psalms,
it’s likely that his was a visceral flight to God as his most trusted
comforter and wisest counselor. We know God met David and delivered
him from his fears (Ps. 34:4). David remembered God’s sufficiency and
was able to find his footing again in God’s presence. After that deep
cleansing breath, David went back to being the clear-headed leader God
called him to be.

The next time life punches us in the gut, let’s run to the Lord
first to find the stabilizing strength that will make us wise,
calm leaders during crisis.

Dear Lord, Grant that I may learn to strengthen myself in You,
not only for the sake of my people, but also for the enormous
blessing it brings to my own soul. Amen.