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How David Encouraged Himself In The Lord And How You Can Too!

In this article, we will look at how David encouraged himself in the Lord and the steps we can take to do the same. Let’s grab our Bible and jump in…

When we think of kings in the Bible, we usually think of King David. Despite his many faults and failings, David is called a man after God’s own heart.

God chose David to begin the lineage and the rule that would one day lead to the coming of His own Son, Jesus Christ. You would assume that God did whatever He could to make David’s life as easy and free of challenges as possible since Jesus was part of the plan.

But that was not the case.

David faced adversaries and challenges that would make many of us question God’s goodness and sovereign power over our lives and the world.

However, David held fast to God and encouraged himself in the Lord whenever he faced such challenges. Which I think is amazing!

But, how did David do that, and what can we as believers learn from his example?

How David Encouraged Himself In The Lord

How David Encouraged Himself In The Lord

When we read 1 Samuel 30:6-8, we see the following:

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. And David said to Abiathar the priest, the son of Ahimelch, ‘Bring me the ephod.’ So Abiathar brought the ephod to David.

And David enquired of the LORD, ‘Shall I pursue after this band? Shall I overtake them?’ He answered him, ‘Pursue, for you shall surely overtake and shall surely rescue.’”

Let’s spend a few moments looking at the context.

David and his men had been away in the land of the Philistines. When they returned to Ziklag, they found that a band of Amalekites had raided and destroyed the city and taken women and children captive, along with all the riches they could find.

David’s own wives and children were among those taken captive. Talk about a bad day!

The people that remained in the city were upset; they felt that David had failed them, that he could have defeated the town if he had been there, and so they threatened to stone him.

This was a terrible time for David. Not only were his people so upset that they wanted to kill him, but he probably felt that he deserved it for failing them, and to top it all off, he was worried about his own family who were taken captive. I can’t imagine all the thoughts that were running through his head.

On top of it, they probably did not know that the Amalekites had not killed anyone at that time.

The Bible says that David, despite being greatly distressed, strengthened and encouraged himself in the Lord (some translations use the word “strengthened,” while others use “encouraged”).

We often face circumstances that seem too great for us to handle, just like David did in that situation (and many others).

It’s easy to lose hope when you see things crumble around you and people turn their back on you.

But we are called to encourage ourselves in the Lord, and David taught us a few ways to do that throughout his life.

He Immediately Sought The Presence Of God

David strengthed Himself In The Lord Bible verse

The Bible says that David asked the priest to bring him the ephod. An ephod was a piece of clothing that priests wore when they were called to serve, and it was part of the preparations they had to undergo before they could enter into God’s presence and make the sacrifices necessary to atone for the people’s sins.

Thus, the ephod carries two distinct meanings: the presence of God and communication with God.

David asked the priest to bring him the ephod, which shows that David entered God’s presence to communicate with Him about the situation.

When we are faced with a challenge, the first thing we should always do is seek God’s presence.

We don’t need an ephod to do that; Jesus already paid the price so we may come boldly to the throne room of grace.

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. – Hebrews 4:16

Furthermore, we have the Spirit of God in us, so we can find God’s presence and communicate with Him wherever we are; we don’t have to look hard to find it or need a special situation or place.

Just find somewhere to spend time with God and get in His presence!

David Asked For God’s Direction

Throughout David’s life, we can often see that he took no steps lightly. He didn’t kill Saul when the opportunity was handed to him on a platter, and he didn’t immediately gather up his men to chase down the Amalekites.

He first asked for God’s direction before reacting and perhaps doing the wrong thing.

He asked God if he should chase down the Amalekites, and God said yes. The result was that David and his men defeated the Amalekites and recovered everything that was stolen, including the women and children, all alive and well.

We should enquire about God’s direction before we react in fear or anger. Sometimes God has something greater planned, and we can lose the blessing that He has in store for us when we immediately rush and take matters into our own hands.

There are times to fight, but it’s always best to hear from God first.

David Made A Habit Of Encouraging Himself In The Lord

An essential point that’s incredibly easy to miss is that David didn’t just encourage himself in the Lord when he had to or only once – he made a daily habit of it! This is a huge thing to understand.

He built an active relationship with God, which he fostered above all else. This gave him strength even before something bad hit.

We can see that in Psalm 23, where David states that the Lord is his Shepherd.

The Lord is my Shepherd

Sheep don’t run to a shepherd when they’re afraid. They learn to follow the shepherd regardless of the circumstances because he will keep them safe and take them on the best paths.

Rather than finding strength and encouragement from the Lord when you need it, living in His strength and encouragement every day is much better.

Make it a part of your daily habits and your walk with God; then, it will take no effort on the day when you really need it.

David Reminded Himself Of God’s Goodness

In Psalm 103, David reminds himself of the Lord’s goodness. He is telling everything within him to bless the Lord and to remember all His benefits.

Then he goes on to list several great things the Lord has done and continues to do.

Praise the Lord, my soul;
    all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
Praise the Lord, my soul,
    and forget not all his benefits—
who forgives all your sins
    and heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit
    and crowns you with love and compassion,
who satisfies your desires with good things
    so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. – Psalm 103:1-5

This is an excellent habit to develop. We’ve all been in a situation where we got so caught up in a problem that we felt that God was far away; it even seems like He is deaf to our pleas at times.

These are the times when we should remind ourselves of the struggles God has delivered us from in the past. To recount the great things He’s done for us and to ponder the promises we have from Him. Count those blessings!

God is good; there can be no denying it, and He will always make a way for us if we believe and trust in Him.

David knew that, and he made an effort daily to remind himself, in his thoughts, about the goodness of God. He pondered and meditated on God’s promises and salvation day and night.

The result is that whenever disaster struck, David did not need to wonder if God would provide a way out, and all he had to do was ask for guidance about what his role should be in that.

This should be a habit with all believers. Write down the great things the Lord has done for you, and keep that list handy.

Whenever you feel like you have no hope, read through the list, picture the darkness you felt when you were in the middle of that situation, and then remember the joy you experienced when God came through for you.

David encouraged himself in the Lord by seeking His presence and guidance. But that wasn’t all he did, and it shouldn’t be all we do.

To truly encourage ourselves in the Lord, we should emulate David’s example of everyday life by traveling through our lives with God next to us.

We should build our relationship with God, draw close to Him, and remind ourselves of His goodness and mercy daily. It should become an active lifestyle. That way, we will live in the courage and strength of the Lord.

Remember that we, as modern believers, are in a position that David could only wish to be in. We have the fullness of Christ, and we have His Holy Spirit.

This means we don’t need to make sacrifices or use an ephod to draw close to God –that has already been done for us. Let’s rejoice in that and boldly draw close to God in everything we do!

Well, I hope this article on how David encouraged himself in the Lord has blessed you. Feel free to drop me a comment below!

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