“Now it happened, when David and his men came to Ziklag, on the third day, that the Amalekites had invaded the South and Ziklag, attacked Ziklag and burned it with fire, and had taken captive the women and those who were there, from small to great… David and the people who were with him lifted up their voices and wept, until they had no more power to weep… 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 encouraged himself in the Lord his God. Then David said to Abiathar the priest, Ahimelech’s son, “Please bring the ephod here to me.” And Abiathar brought the ephod to David. So David inquired of the Lord, saying: “Shall I pursue this troop? Shall I overtake them?” And He answered him, “Pursue, for you shall surely overtake them and without fail recover all… So David recovered all…” (1 Sam 30:1-18)
This is one of the most interesting and practical passages in the Bible. David was at one of his lowest points in life. While David and his men were away, the Amalekites (who represent the demons) have captured their wives, children and all their property. The men wept for the loss until the tears failed to come. David’s friends were so grieved and angry that they wanted to stone their leader to death. In these terrible and tragic circumstances, we are told the ‘David encouraged himself in the Lord his God’. Once he received strength to stand, David asked for the lined ephod to be brought to him. This ephod is the most beautiful part of the dressing of the High Priest. By faith, David does the ministry of a priest. He boldly enters the presence of God and asks questions concerning the terrible situation. God gives him the strategy. He is to pursue the enemy, overcome it and he shall recover all that was lost. David obeys the Word of God and he recovers all.
What is the lesson? Child of God, when prayers fail, when tears are dry, when friends betray and money is gone, when you are all alone and completely misunderstood, then do what David did: ‘encourage yourself in the Lord your God!’ Be careful not to allow depression to set in. Depression is very addictive. Failure feelings become a nest of comfort zone. You feel like a loser and start hating the change for the better. Other believers, your pastors and friends are all good to help you when they can. But do not be over attached to human beings. No man is God! There shall be times when you are all alone and you need to learn the royal secret of self- encouragement in the Lord. You enter the presence of God with worship! You go to the Word of God, you remind yourself of His promises; you remember the testimonies of the past. Pray and stay focused. Strength and hope shall come! Jesus said: ‘You shall receive power once the Holy Ghost comes upon you!’ (Ac 1:8).
If you find yourself in an impossible situation then go to God and ask for wisdom. You are a priest and a king. Behave like one! Reject all inferiority complexes concerning your royal priesthood calling! A king is known by his heart and his mouth. Your father is the Lion of Judah! Roar like your Father! By the power of the Holy Spirit become bold and speak with authority. Pray to God! He hears you! Prophesy over your life and circumstances! In the name of Jesus, demons will run away. Why live with this sense of failure and loss when truly you can fight back and ‘recover all’? Things lost when you were young, opportunities missed in the past, mistakes and regrets of years gone by, these things can be changed; these can be reversed! At the name of Jesus every knee must bow! God can grant you total recovery! These are the secrets of encouraging yourself: Entering the presence of God, prayer, the promises of God, His provision and finally warfare praise. Be strong in the power of God’s might! Come back with a testimony! Let’s glorify God together! In Jesus name, amen!