Life is full of hills and valleys. I remember my grandmother in her late 70s dealing with a prolonged attack by the devil who sought to steal her peace by shutting down her secret place with the Lord. She couldn’t hear him very well for months on end and she had loved the Lord and served Him her entire life.
The enemy will do his best to cause us to question God’s love for us.
It’s the strategy he used in the garden with Eve... “God doesn’t really have your best interests at heart. He’s actually just keeping you in the dark and controlling you.”
David had one of these deep valleys right before his destiny came to fruition. (1 Samuel 30) David and his men came back to their homes after a long season of warfare. They found that their town had been ransacked. Their wives and children and all of their belongings had been stolen by the Amalekites. On top of all of that, David’s own men were so distraught that they whispered behind his back that it was time to stone him.
That’s a pretty low valley.
But David, the man after God’s own heart, did not fall apart and become a victim of his circumstances. David “encouraged himself in the Lord.”
David reminded himself of God’s goodness. He reminded himself of all that God had done for him. David worshipped the Lord in the midst of his valley. And even though he didn’t understand, he chose to trust God and he asked for the ephod. In our day this would be the same as opening the Word of God and asking for direction... or inquiring of the Lord and receiving direction from the Holy Spirit.
God gave David direction for recovering everything he had just lost. David didn’t realize it... but on the other side of the Kingdom at the very moment that he was choosing to encourage himself in the Lord, his very destiny was about to be fulfilled. David had been waiting for God to hand the Kingship over to him. At the same time David chose to not become a victim, Saul was being removed from office and David became King just a few days later.
The enemy fights us the hardest the closer we get to our breakthrough.
We must all learn how to encourage ourselves in the Lord like David did. We must learn to force ourselves to praise the Lord even if we don’t “feel” like it. We must remember His goodness even when our lives are seemingly falling apart.
We must always inquire of Him for direction. Even if we think we cannot hear God, He will find a way to get us the answer to our questions.
My grandmother praised God even though He seemed silent. She didn’t change anything about her daily devotions or prayer time. I will never forget the look on her face when she told me the storm had passed. She was so full of joy. She felt closer to the Lord than she ever had. She made it through the valley and won the victory!
You can make it through your valley as well. DECIDE that you are not a victim. DECIDE to praise Him and read His word. DECIDE to remember all of the good things He has day be for you.
DECIDE to encourage yourself in the Lord. Your destiny may be coming to pass on the other side of the Kingdom!