Pastor of Iglesia Conexiones, and author of Biblical Prayer for Today's Believers: Transform Your Prayer Life (available on Amazon).
1 Samuel 30:6
"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, ESV)
From Struggle to Strength
The Bible tells us that David was greatly distressed because of the situation he was facing: when he and his men returned to the city, they found out that their enemies had burnt down the city and taken away their families—therefore, David's own began to talk about stoning him. David had suddenly suffered great loss: he had lost his posessions he had lost his family, and he had lost support and reputation.
Nevertheless, despite these great losses, the Bible tells us that David strengthened himself in the Lord his God. In other words, David found in God the emotional and mental strength he needed. But how did David do this? Look at what the Bible says:
"But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God" (1 Samuel 30:6b, ESV).
The Lord was David's God—the Lord was his God. In other words, David had a personal relationship with God. Now, the Bible tells us that, in order to have a personal relationship with God, one must exercise faith in God (Hebrews 11:6).
God's Word and Faith
But one can only exercise faith in God if one has heard God's word (Romans 10:17). Had David heard God's word? Yes!
Unlike us, David didn't have a New Testament—neither did he have the writings of the prophets or the book of Proverbs. Moreover, since David is the author of many psalms, David didn't really have access to the book of Psalms either.
So then, what revelation did David have access to? He had the words of Moses, the words of Joshua, the history of the judges, and the ministry of Samuel. If you've read these books of the Bible, they aren't the most inspirational ones—nevertheless, David exercised faith in what God had revealed about himself to ancient Israel, and God rewarded David's faith.
We Too Can Trust Him
We must not overlook these things. Like David, we have access to God's word so we can believe in God through it. Unlike David, we have the full revelation of God's word—what a blessed time to live in!
Throughout the Bible (God's word), God says many things about Himself, and He makes many promises also. What we need to do is to trust Him (exercise faith in Him) and to trust his promises. As we place our confidence in Him, He will begin to lead us, to work in us, and to work through us—He will reward our faith.
Moreover, as our faith is rewarded, our faith will also increase.
It is through faith in God through what God had revealed about Himself, that David was able to find strength in God. Through faith, the concepts of the Bible became more than just concepts—they became spiritual experiences, because God answered David.
In a similar way, we can expect God to also reward our faith. What we need to do is look for what God has said about Himself in the Bible—His attributes and character—believe in Him, believe in His promises—and then, after we have trusted Him, we will receive both strength (encouragement) and experiences that will confirm our faith (for God will answer our prayers).
Questions for Reflection
1. What does God say about Himself in the Bible? What are his attributes? What is his character like?
2. What promises relevant to your circumstances and situation does God make in the Bible?
3, Can you trust God's attributes, character, and promises?
4. How do God's attributes, character, and promises bring you comfort and new strength?
5. How are comfort and strength what you need to overcome adversity in your life?
God, Heavenly Father, I praise you for your attributes and your charadcter; I praise you for all the promises you have made in the Bible. Lord, during these difficult times, I want to trust you—and I pray that you reward my faith in you so I can find strength in you.
Lord, guide me through life and through all these decisions; answer my prayers; bless me; and help me to see that you are indeed my strength. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
© 2021 Marcelo Carcach