Thursday, April 8, 2010

Talk Tuesday- In the Midst of the Trial

Life can seem like an uphill battle sometimes. We are constantly clambering to get out of the valley onto the mountaintop, where the landscape of our lives seems clearer from the brighter, higher vantage point. Trials come unexpectedly into our lives, upsetting our daily routines and challenging our belief systems. Yet what changes us and strengthens us is how we choose to act in the midst of it. I learned a lesson of trust from King David (1 Samuel Chapters 8 to 30).

When the LORD GOD brought Israel out of the land of Egypt into the Promised Land, the Israelites requested to have a king rule over them. The LORD sent His prophet Samuel to anoint Saul, son of Kish, of the tribe of Benjamin, as king. Once established, Saul rebelled against the LORD. GOD chose to take the kingdom away from Saul and give it to one whose heart was more faithful-David, the son of Jesse, of the tribe of Judah. David slew Goliath of Gath, the Philistine giant whose people were enemies of Israel. He entered into King Saul's service and grew in favour with GOD, the king and man. Saul became very jealous of David and sought to murder him. David fled Saul's wrath, with his men and their families, seeking refuge in the Philistine city of Ziklag, where they were allowed to settle.

The Philistines again decided to go to war against Israel. David and his men came to join the Philistine army but were turned back by their rulers, who did not trust David's intentions. When David and his men returned, they found themselves in an unanticipated, painful trial:

When David and his men came to Ziklag, they found it destroyed by fire and their wives and sons and daughters taken captive. So David and his men wept aloud until they had no strength left to weep. David's two wives had been captured—Ahinoam of Jezreel and Abigail, the widow of Nabal of Carmel. David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. 1 Samuel 30:3-6

David was faithful to the LORD, the king, his own men and even to the Philistine enemy yet he faced rejection from everyone around him. How did David choose to act in the darkness of the valley?

"But David found strength in the LORD his GOD." 1 Samuel 30:6

As I pondered this statement, I began to reflect on my own life. Many times I have felt deep sorrow, saddened by the trials. Yet, when no one could understand my pain, GOD was there. He comforted me in every storm. His Holy Spirit guided me when I could not see. He loved me through His Son Jesus Christ, forgiving me each time I faltered in my faith. Then He led me out of the valley and unto the mountaintop where I celebrated His Mighty hand and my victory. He did this for David too:

David recovered everything the Amalekites had taken, including his two wives. Nothing was missing: young or old, boy or girl, plunder or anything else they had taken. David brought everything back. He took all the flocks and herds, and his men drove them ahead of the other livestock, saying, "This is David's plunder." 1 Samuel 30:18-20

The LORD not only restored to David everything that was lost, but gave him even more because he chose to trust Him. Are you in the storm of your life? Do you feel all alone? Choose to trust in the LORD, He is trustworthy. Your faith will be strengthened as you witness His Mighty hand at work on your behalf.

"Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge Him,
and He will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6


Anonymous said...

this is a very timely post. I am in tears at this very moment, thinking how lost I've been in my own pain and suffering. Yes, only God knows what we truly go through. Friends and family can only empathize and help so much.

I got this yesterday in my inbox which encouraged me:
"Praise the Lord; praise God our savior! For each day he carries us in his arms." Psalm 68:19. I realized that He does carry me in His arms - even when I don't feel it - or see it.

The Lord has already come through for me - not the whole healing, but in the little things. I know that He has allowed my suffering, and that He is there to be my strength and sustain me THROUGH. I pray for Deliverance. He may have other plans. But I praise Him. I give him all the honour He deserves and the glory. And there is still much to be thankful for in my life - including His forgiveness & my ultimate redemption in Jesus Christ.

Thank you for posting this.
Blessings to you and the BGO community.

Natasha said...

Hi Anonymous,

God is able. When we are in the storm, right down there in the valley, it can feel so overwhelming. Yes, God is with us. He promised never to forsake us. I have been there. When I was hospitalized for two months last year, I experienced physical pain as never before. I didn't even think that I was able to through such a valley. All I could do was cry out to the Lord Jesus Christ. I want to tell you the honest truth-HE WAS ALWAYS WITH ME!!! There were days that I could not even speak because of the pain, but I sensed Him with me and I would commune silently with Him and He with me. Looking back now, I know that I would never, ever have been able to make it through without Him.

I have been holding on to this Psalm for quite some time now, meditating on it. Psalm 34 and especially verse 18,

"The LORD is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit."

You have a beautiful attitude in the midst of the storm which GOD will honour. I will lift you up to the Lord in prayer. May His peace surround you in your trial.

Blessed said...

An inspiring post. Thank you, Tash, for reminding us that God is always in full control. Both you and Andrew are in my prayers, always. Anonymous, be strong. He carries us through the darkest storms, even when we think we are all alone, and especially when it may be difficult to keep the faith.