Oct 29 - Developing Your Heart for God, Part 5
Throughout David’s life there were many ups and downs and there came a point when things were so “down,” David didn’t know if they would ever bounce back up. Saul had taken away David’s wife, his best friend, and his spiritual mentor. He chased David from his homeland and tried to kill him. David, who had very recently had friends, fame, wealth, power, respect, and even had people singing songs about him in the streets, one day found himself living in a cave, among other people who had been rejected from society, in the land of his enemies.
This went on for years and years without any explanation from God or any clue to when this period of his life might end. David was deeply discouraged, but he “found strength in the Lord his God.” (1 Samuel 30:6) When David was in the midst of all his brokenness, weeping until he could weep no more, he retained his deep faith in God. It was in this time, living in the cave, when he wrote Psalm 142:
1 I cry aloud to the Lord; I lift up my voice to the Lord for mercy. 2 I pour out before him my complaint; before him I tell my trouble.
3 When my spirit grows faint within me, it is you who watch over my way. In the path where I walk people have hidden a snare for me. 4 Look and see, there is no one at my right hand; no one is concerned for me. I have no refuge; no one cares for my life.
5 I cry to you, Lord; I say, “You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living.”
6 Listen to my cry, for I am in desperate need; rescue me from those who pursue me, for they are too strong for me. 7 Set me free from my prison, that I may praise your name. Then the righteous will gather about me because of your goodness to me.
No matter what the “cave” of our lives is, (health issues, broken relationships, financial struggles, etc), this is an incredible example for us to look at and apply to our lives when we are discouraged. We don’t need to put on a happy face for God. He knows us intimately and we can’t hide anything from him, so go to him honestly and tell him your complaints; lay your discouragement down at his feet.
Brokenness may come into your life, but these are the times when God does some of his best work! He will convict us and make beautiful changes in our hearts. Know that our God is not a God of discouragement and those feelings aren’t coming from him. Rather than letting that discouragement spiral to the point where it damages your faith, lean on God and allow him to carry you through.
Next week, Greg will continue this message by using examples from David’s life to teach us how to deal with our discouragements. Don’t miss it!