“….But David felt strengthened and encouraged in the LORD his God.”
1 Samuel 30:6 AMP
“Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.”
I Samuel 30:6 NKJV
Sometimes we feel like everything around us is so discouraging and no one is there to strengthen us or encourage us. Enemy tries to put us down and even if people around us try to encourage us, we may still not feel it and will be left so alone.
David was in such a situation. The city that they (David and his men) lived was invaded by the enemies and they took everything including their wives and sons and daughters. So they were in great sorrow. David was greatly distressed because the people with him turned against him and decided to stone him. But David looked to God Almighty and felt strengthened and encouraged in the LORD his God.
In our life also we sometimes may feel so discouraged. Nowadays we hear a lot about depression and anxiety among people of all ages. Around us there is so much of negativity. Just like David, even our friends may turn against us. Or it may come to a situation where you will feel like no one truly understands you. But even in that situation, will you turn to God and strengthen yourself in Him?
Bible says “He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength.”Isaiah 40:29 NKJV.
Apostle Paul says from his own experience in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “His strength is made perfect in our weakness”.
Here are few ways your can strengthen and encourage yourself in the Lord
- Remember to Praise Him
- Remember to Pray to Him
- Remember His Presence
- Remember His Promises
- Remember His Provision
In Judges chapter 6 we see Gideon, whom The Angel of God addressed as mighty man of valor. The Angel reminds Gideon of the presence of the Lord that is with him.
When Gideon heard that, Gideon said to Him, “O my lord, if the LORD is with us, why then has all this happened to us? And where are all His miracles which our fathers told us about, saying, ‘Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt?’ But now the LORD has forsaken us and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.”
Judges 6:13 NKJV
Then the LORD turned to him and said, “Go in this might of yours, and you shall save Israel from the hand of the Midianites. Have I not sent you?” Judges 6:14 NKJV
This reply from the Lord may sound so strange to us. But God actually found a man who believed in his heart that what is happening to him and his people is not okay if God is with them. Gideon believed that there is something more to it. That God Almighty who is with them will never fail them. Gideon needed to make sure God’s presence is with him. And we read in verse 16, And the LORD said to him, “Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat the Midianites as one man.” Judges 6:16 NKJV
Are you sure of God’s presence in your life? If not, get right with God and abide in Him. Understand that He never changes, He is right were we left Him. It is us who turned away from His presence. Return to him with repentance. He is waiting to receive you with open arms.
We see once David strengthened and encouraged himself in the Lord the next thing he did was,
- David inquired of the Lord. (Vs 7) Then,
- David went (vs.9)
- David pursued (vs 10)
- David attacked them (vs.17)
- David rescued everyone (vs 18)
- So David recovered all (vs 18,19)
Eventhough David was distressed and discouraged, when he encouraged himself in the Lord and felt strengthened in the Lord, he went and attacked the enemies and recovered everything he lost.
Similarly when Gideon found strength in God’s presence we see in verse 24 of Judges 6, he built an altar to God and named it Jehovah Shalom (The Lord is peace) and he went and defeated the Midianites with the help of the Almighty God.
When God strengthens us there will be peace and victory. Don’t be discouraged trying to strengthen yourself with anything else. Don’t seek encouragement anywhere else. Because that is not enough for us, in this spiritual journey. We need more of Jesus, we need continuous fellowship with the Holy Spirit. So strengthen and encourage yourself in the Lord.
We see in the book of Ephesians Paul encourages us to be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”
Ephesians 6:10-11 NKJV
Jesus said “…in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 NIV
And he has given us everything to stand strong in him. We see in Ephesians 6 the armor of God.
- Truth as the belt
- Righteousness as the breastplate
- Readiness for the gospel of peace as shoes
- Faith as the shield
- Salvation as the helmet
- Word of God as the sword
- And always praying
The message version explains this verse like this- Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. (Ephesians 6:13-18 MSG)
So when we feel discouraged, remember God has equipped you and provided for you everything you need for this battle. Put on the armor of God and stand strong in Him. He is our strength and we are fighting this battle from the victory He already gave us.
- Remember the Truth that you are a child of God. (Jesus is the truth the way and the life.)
- Remember that you are God’s righteousness through the blood of Jesus Christ. (“God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 5:21)
- Remember Jesus has given you His peace (Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”John 14:27 NIV)
- Remember to put your faith in God alone (“Have faith in God,” Mark 11:22NIV, “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.” I John 5:4 NKJV)
- Remember your salvation– (that you are in Christ and now there is no condemnation Romans 8:1, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” 1 Peter 2:7)
- Remember to read and meditate and apply the word of God.
- Remember to always pray and communicate with God Almighty.(“He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him.”Psalms 91:15 NIV)
And when we do these we will be strengthened and encouraged and God will use us greatly for His glory. Just like David and Gideon did, seek Him, worship Him, obey Him and you will have victorious life in Christ .
Realize the truth that our strength is not in ourselves but it is in God Almighty who is with us. So don’t try to do this with your own strength . We will fail and will be discouraged. But completely trust the Holy Spirit that God has put in your heart and strengthen yourself in the Lord.
When you feel like giving up, remember that you are yet to tap into the greatest source of strength and encouragement. Just lean on To God and He will take you through this. In our weakness when God reveals His power and gives us victory, God’s name will be glorified. David through his struggles learned to trust in God and God enabled him to write so many psalms, which is strengthening believers all across this world in all generations. Every pain in our life has a purpose, a God purpose. When you trust God through that He will bring beauty out of it. And it will be a blessing not only for us but for people around us.
Towards the end of the chapter 30 of 1 Samuel we see David not only recovered what he lost but also what his friends in Judah lost. So he sent part of the plunder to Judah and blessed them also. Also he sent gifts to all the towns he visited. What a blessing David became when he strengthened and encouraged himself in the Lord.
It is a choice each person has to make, are you going to stay depressed and discouraged or will you trust that, the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world?. (1 John 4:4).
Will you listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit and obey Him?
Let us choose to Trust In Our God and Be Strengthened and Encouraged by Him. Jesus Christ is coming soon, let us continue doing His work with the strength and encouragement He is giving us. So when He returns, He will see us working and doing His will and we will be called good and faithful servants. As Nehemiah said the Joy of the Lord is our strength. Let us rise up from the discouragement and depressed state and with everything God gave us , let us finish this race. Greater things are yet to come!!!
“My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord GOD, That I may declare all Your works.”
Psalms 73:26, 28 NKJV
May God bless you all 🙏