Image source: Blessed2Travel
Crises test our commitment and loyalty to a person or a mission. Crises also test the commitment and loyalty of that other person or mission controller to us. Crises are always two way tests. The results from crises could be tragic loss of life, may this not be our case; crises would often break us, or strengthen us; reveal falsehood, traitors, and enemies; and hopefully point us to truth and safety.
The many crises in King David’s life revealed from 1 Samuel Chapter 16, through all of 2 Samuel, to 1 Kings Chapter 2, teaches all these different aspects and outcomes to crises. We see this clearly in the first major crisis in David’s life, when he was running away from King Saul, who wanted to kill him out of jealousy (1 Samuel Chapter 18 to 31). David’s faith in God was severely tested at this time.
David moved from one hiding place to another; he hid in Gath (Goliath’s hometown), the cave of Adullam, Hereth forest, on to the wilderness of En Gedi, then settling in Ziklag. At En Gedi, a mountain place with plenty of caves, springs, rivers, and waterfalls in the desert, David found rest, refuge, and refreshment. I encourage you to watch ‘Visiting Ein Gedi’ by John DeLancey on YouTube, and for the advanced Bible student also watch ‘Searching for a King’ Episode 3 on YouTube.
As we read 1 Samuel Chapter 18 to 31, we see that David had many opportunities to kill Saul in revenge, but David did not do it because of his commitment and loyalty to God. At En Gedi, David found refreshment, and hope, and strength. At En Gedi David wrote Psalm 16, 35, 57, 63, and 108. Years later when David wrote Psalm 23, we can see the influence of his time at En Gedi in his words.
Psalm 23 (NIV) (shortened) reads: “The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul… Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me… You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies… my cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life…”
In the midst of a life threatening crisis, God led David to En Gedi, a place of refreshing and empowerment; may the Lord guide us also to our En Gedi, to a place of refreshing and empowerment, in spite of the many troubles that threaten us in today’s world, in Jesus name, Amen!