Today we are reading 1 Samuel 27. In this chapter we read about David and his men and their families seeking refuge by living among the Philistines. “Then David said in his heart, “Now I shall perish one day by the hand of Saul. There is nothing better for me than that I should escape to the land of the Philistines. Then Saul will despair of seeking me any longer within the borders of Israel, and I shall escape out of his hand.” So David arose and went over, he and the six hundred men who were with him, to Achish the son of Maoch, king of Gath. And David lived with Achish at Gath, he and his men, every man with his household, and David with his two wives, Ahinoam of Jezreel, and Abigail of Carmel, Nabal’s widow. And when it was told Saul that David had fled to Gath, he no longer sought him.” 1 Samuel‬ ‭27:1-4‬ ‭ESV‬‬ This is a strange turn of events! David seeks refuge with the enemy Philistines. Where do you seek refuge when you are frightened? Where is the most unlikely place you have found shelter? Who have you given shelter to? May God be your refuge and fortress and may you extend His refuge to others! Pastor Tim

Today we are reading 1 Samuel 25. In this chapter we read about the death of Samuel and David’s encounter with Nabal. “When David’s young men came, they said all this to Nabal in the name of David, and then they waited. And Nabal answered David’s servants, “Who is David? Who is the son of Jesse? There are many servants these days who are breaking away from their masters. Shall I take my bread and my water and my meat that I have killed for my shearers and give it to men who come from I do not know where?””
‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭25:9-11‬ ‭ESV‬‬ In the morning, when the wine had gone out of Nabal, his wife told him these things, and his heart died within him, and he became as a stone. And about ten days later the Lord struck Nabal, and he died.”
‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭25:37-38‬ ‭ESV‬‬ This story regarding Nabal concerns David, as the Lord’s anointed, requesting hospitality from a very wealthy man. Nabal refuses and incurs David’s wrath. Nabal’s wife Abigail intervenes. She makes peace with David and ultimately God removes Nabal from the picture. How has God helped you with those who treat you poorly? Have you been tempted to be angry and attack them? Who did God use to calm you and make peace? How can you help de-escalate situations and bring peace? May God bless someone today through your Christian diplomacy. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading 1 Samuel 24. In this chapter we read about David sparing Samuel’s life. “As soon as David had finished speaking these words to Saul, Saul said, “Is this your voice, my son David?” And Saul lifted up his voice and wept. He said to David, “You are more righteous than I, for you have repaid me good, whereas I have repaid you evil. And you have declared this day how you have dealt well with me, in that you did not kill me when the Lord put me into your hands.” ‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭24:16-18‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Have you ever had the opportunity to repay someone for the evil they have done against you? What did you do? How did your choice turn out? If you had the opportunity to do it over what would you change? Have you ever received mercy from someone who had the right to punish you? May God make you a merciful servant. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading 1 Samuel 23. In this chapter we read about the continuing “cat and mouse” scenario of Saul. “And David remained in the strongholds in the wilderness, in the hill country of the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God did not give him into his hand. And Saul and his men went to seek him. And David was told, so he went down to the rock and lived in the wilderness of Maon. And when Saul heard that, he pursued after David in the wilderness of Maon. Saul went on one side of the mountain, and David and his men on the other side of the mountain. And David was hurrying to get away from Saul. As Saul and his men were closing in on David and his men to capture them, a messenger came to Saul, saying, “Hurry and come, for the Philistines have made a raid against the land.” So Saul returned from pursuing after David and went against the Philistines. Therefore that place was called the Rock of Escape. And David went up from there and lived in the strongholds of Engedi.” ‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭23:14, 25-29‬ ‭ESV‬‬
God continued to protect David even when his enemy the king was about to catch him. God provided a diversion through the Philistines. In the same way God protects us and keeps us safe though danger is near. God will warn us. God will guide us. God will raise us up as His people to reach the lost and bring them to salvation in Jesus. The bottom line is this, God will accomplish His purpose through us no matter what our circumstances are. God bless you this day as you do great things in His name! Pastor Tim

Today we are reading 1 Samuel 22. In this chapter we read about Saul killing the priests of the Lord for helping David. “And the king said, “You shall surely die, Ahimelech, you and all your father’s house.” And the king said to the guard who stood about him, “Turn and kill the priests of the Lord, because their hand also is with David, and they knew that he fled and did not disclose it to me.” But the servants of the king would not put out their hand to strike the priests of the Lord. Then the king said to Doeg, “You turn and strike the priests.” And Doeg the Edomite turned and struck down the priests, and he killed on that day eighty-five persons who wore the linen ephod. And Nob, the city of the priests, he put to the sword; both man and woman, child and infant, ox, donkey and sheep, he put to the sword.” ‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭22:16-19‬ ‭ESV‬‬ This story makes me see that the “cancel culture” is nothing new. The priest spoke in defense of the innocent David and Saul had him killed. When Saul’s own servants refused to do it, he turned to a person from another country, Doeg the Edomite, to do his dirty work. The troubles of today are nothing new and God is able to help us navigate these times. He is able to defeat those who do evil and protect us from all harm. He is able to establish us in the work He has called us to do even if the opposition is great. God is greater! May you go about your day today with joy and confidence. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading 1 Samuel 21. In this chapter we read about David eating the Holy Bread that had been presented to God. “Then David came to Nob, to Ahimelech the priest. And Ahimelech came to meet David, trembling, and said to him, “Why are you alone, and no one with you?” And David said to Ahimelech the priest, “The king has charged me with a matter and said to me, ‘Let no one know anything of the matter about which I send you, and with which I have charged you.’ I have made an appointment with the young men for such and such a place. Now then, what do you have on hand? Give me five loaves of bread, or whatever is here.” And the priest answered David, “I have no common bread on hand, but there is holy bread—if the young men have kept themselves from women.” And David answered the priest, “Truly women have been kept from us as always when I go on an expedition. The vessels of the young men are holy even when it is an ordinary journey. How much more today will their vessels be holy?” So the priest gave him the holy bread, for there was no bread there but the bread of the Presence, which is removed from before the Lord, to be replaced by hot bread on the day it is taken away.”
‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭21:1-6‬ ‭ESV‬‬ This is a strange story where David is on the run avoiding Saul. He goes to the priest and asks for something to eat. All they have is the bread which had been offered to God—holy bread. David and his men ate the bread and continued to hide out. What desperate measures have you taken? How have you reacted in times of fear? God never abandons us. He always provides the things we need—sometimes through unusual means like holy bread! Who do God send to help you in your time of need? May God bless you to be an answer to someone’s prayer. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading 1 Samuel 20. In this chapter we read about how Jonathan helps David avoid Saul’s wrath. “Then Jonathan said to David, “Whatever you say, I will do for you.” David said to Jonathan, “Behold, tomorrow is the new moon, and I should not fail to sit at table with the king. But let me go, that I may hide myself in the field till the third day at evening. If your father misses me at all, then say, ‘David earnestly asked leave of me to run to Bethlehem his city, for there is a yearly sacrifice there for all the clan.’ If he says, ‘Good!’ it will be well with your servant, but if he is angry, then know that harm is determined by him.” 1 Samuel‬ ‭20:4-7‬ ‭ESV‬‬ The friendship between Jonathan and David was so strong that Jonathan was willing to oppose his father to protect his friend. God calls us to be that kind of friend to those around us. Who has been that kind of friend to you? What did it feel like to have a friend stand with you during difficult times? When have you been that kind of friend? May God use you to be a wonderful friend to everyone around you. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading 1 Samuel 19. In this chapter we read about Saul’s attempts to kill David. “Now David fled and escaped, and he came to Samuel at Ramah and told him all that Saul had done to him. And he and Samuel went and lived at Naioth. And it was told Saul, “Behold, David is at Naioth in Ramah.” Then Saul sent messengers to take David, and when they saw the company of the prophets prophesying, and Samuel standing as head over them, the Spirit of God came upon the messengers of Saul, and they also prophesied. When it was told Saul, he sent other messengers, and they also prophesied. And Saul sent messengers again the third time, and they also prophesied.” 1 Samuel‬ ‭19:18-21‬ ‭ESV‬‬ What an interesting strategy! Saul is crazy with violent hatred toward David. He sends men to capture David and as they approach they are filled with the Holy Spirit and become harmless! Saul does this three times with the same result. Finally, he himself goes to kill David and the same thing happens to him! How has God made your enemies harmless? How has God protected you from those who would do you harm? May God comfort you today with the things that concern you. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading 1 Samuel 18. In this chapter we read about David’s friendship with Jonathan, his marriage to Saul’s daughter Michal and David’s success. “As they were coming home, when David returned from striking down the Philistine, the women came out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tambourines, with songs of joy, and with musical instruments. And the women sang to one another as they celebrated, “Saul has struck down his thousands, and David his ten thousands.” And Saul was very angry, and this saying displeased him. He said, “They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed thousands, and what more can he have but the kingdom?” And Saul eyed David from that day on. And David had success in all his undertakings, for the Lord was with him. And when Saul saw that he had great success, he stood in fearful awe of him.”       ‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭18:6-9, 14-15‬ ‭ESV‬‬ God was with David and He protected him and gave him great success. All of this made Saul jealous. When Saul heard that the people loved David it made him hate David more. How do you react when you hear someone giving compliments to someone else? Have you ever been jealous? How does your faith speak to your feelings of jealousy? May God make you secure in His love! Pastor Tim

Today we are reading 1 Samuel 17. In this chapter we read about David killing the giant Goliath. “Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down and cut off your head. And I will give the dead bodies of the host of the Philistines this day to the birds of the air and to the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, and that all this assembly may know that the Lord saves not with sword and spear. For the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give you into our hand.”” 1 Samuel‬ ‭17:45-47‬ ‭ESV‬‬ This story is often used as a teaching point when we face our own “Goliaths”. What verses stand out as you read this account? My favorite verse is “the battle is the Lord’s”. How does this verse encourage you? David fought Goliath on behalf of the men of Israel. Who fights on your behalf? How does God react when His people are attacked or maligned? May God give you the confidence He gave David as you face your foes. Pastor Tim