“I am so tired. I can’t wait to get home.”

“Well, we’re almost there, Ruben. I bet my wife will have dinner waiting for me. It’s too bad that your wife doesn’t cook like mine. Simon laughed as he slapped his friend on the back.

Just then, he turned his head and saw smoke rising in the distance. “Hey Ruben, isn’t that smoke coming from Ziklag?

It wasn’t long before the whole troupe of men, who had gone off to fight with David, realized it was their homes that were burning in the distance. Weary bodies suddenly took on the strength of urgency. They ran to their homes only to find that no one was there and nothing was left, no house, no wives, no children, nothing. There was no welcoming hugs. No hot steaming dinners. No children are laughing in the streets.

Crying in anguish, they lashed out at the only person they could blame. “David! This is your fault. This is all your fault. If we hadn’t been out with you, this would have never happened.” In anger and despair, thy gathered rocks to kill the man they had followed into battle. The hopelessness of their situation was overwhelming, and they felt the need to punish someone, anyone, even if it meant killing David.

David had also lost everything. His two wives were gone along with his children. Not only that but now he suffered the loss of his friends as well. Isolated and alone, David encouraged himself in the Lord. “Shepherd, of my soul, I love you. Holy God, I love you. I trust you. You are not caught by surprise at this situation I am facing right now. You are my hope when I am hopeless. You are my strength when I feel weary. You are my solution when I don’t know what to do.” Over and over, he expressed his love and dependence on the God he loved.

It wasn’t long before God began to speak to David. With new confidence, he stood before his friends. “Let’s go get our families! God just spoke to me, and He will fight for us.”

What David didn’t know was that while he was encouraging himself in the Lord, King Saul lay dying on the battlefield, making way for David to become King.

Because of the COVID-19 virus, we have become isolated from our family and friends. We can’t even comfort those we love as they struggle with isolation. Nerves are on edge, and many lash out at the ones they love because there is no one else to blame. Let’s encourage ourselves in the Lord like David did because, at this very moment, God is making way for us. Something good is about to happen. We serve a miracle-working God, and nothing is too hard for Him!

Listen for His voice as He responds to you, “I love you with an everlasting love. There is nothing that can separate you from my love. There is no social distancing that can keep us apart. I have direct access to your heart right now. Respond to me as I reach out to you. Close your eyes, listen to my words and feel my heartbeat. You are precious and dear to me. I know you

feel alone right now, but you are not alone. I have never left you, and I never will. I know your tomorrows, and I have gone before you. Trust me. I won’t leave you. Don’t give in to this spirit of death who whispers words of sadness, depression, and suicide. Those are not my words. My words are love. My words are peace. My words are hope. My words are LIFE!

Psalms 18:1-6 I love you, Lord;
you are my strength….my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection.

He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety.

I called on the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and he saved me from my enemies…

But in my distress I cried out to the Lord; Yes, I prayed to my God for help.

He heard me from his sanctuary;
My cry to him reached his ears.NLV

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. ESV

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