1 Samuel 30:6-8 “David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him, for all the people were embittered because of his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God. Then David said to Abiathar the priest, . . . ‘Please bring me the ephod.’ . . . David inquired of the Lord, saying, ‘Shall I pursue this band?’”

Observation: In 1 Samuel 30:6–8, we see why David was qualified to be king of Israel. While he and his army had been away, the enemy had raided their city, burned it, and had taken captive all the women and children. Not only had David lost everything, but his own soldiers turned against him to the point of murmuring about killing him.

Application: What was David’s response to his personal loss and to the opposition of his own army? It was to “strengthen himself in the Lord.” He could have rallied the troops and charged off after the invaders. He could have had his own pity party. He could have taken offense against God.

Certainly he had fleshly justification for any of those responses, given the personal devastation David had experienced. But instead, David’s good response was that he turned to God for solace and direction. He showed remarkable restraint by not charging off in his own strength, and in not lashing out at either God or his troops. He showed deep wisdom by turning to God. And ultimately, his pursuit of the enemy under God’s direction was completely effective. He won, not in his own strength, but by seeking and waiting on the Lord.

God wants me to learn well the lesson of not jumping to my own defense, to learn to come under His full covering, learning not to be offended with God or with those around me when bad things happen.

Prayer: Lord, I again appeal to You to give me the heart of David. I suspect this is one of those things that can only come with practice, which means being presented with even more trials. But Lord, whatever it takes, I want my heart to be changed; I want my emotional chemistry to be so altered that my immediate and only response in the midst of trials would be to seek Your face. I love You, Lord.