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Boundaries and Blessings 

Your boundaries and blessings will never go unchallenged.  Regardless of how much you achieved yesterday, it is never enough.  You may have won the victory last year, last month or last week and thought you had settled things once and for all.  Sorry, but things do not remain the same.  Constant change occurs in every area of life.  Take the case of Goliath who taunted the armies of Israel.  King Saul had lived through that old scene before.  He knew what it was like to fight the Philistines.  His armies beat them back, then they would come again and score victories.  Saul would establish his boundaries, and then they would be moved by the enemy.    

And the Philistines stood on a mountain on the one side, and Israel stood on a mountain on the other side: and there was a valley between them.” 1 Samuel 17:3. Your boundaries are in your valleys.  You can easily see the boundary from your mountaintop experience.  You are far from it and you may think that you will have no problem maintaining it.  It is when you descend into the valleys of life that you find yourself face to face with your boundary.  On the mountaintop, your boundaries seem immovable.  In the valley, those same boundaries seem unsustainable. 

This is precisely why Jesus told us how to pray.  “Give us this day our daily bread.”  If the only spiritual sustenance you receive is on Sunday morning or Sunday night, you are seriously malnourished.  You need to put your feet under the table of the Lord every day!  Satan always challenges you when you are at your lowest point, when you are most vulnerable.  Exercise extreme caution here!  It’s paradoxical.  It is when you don’t feel like coming to church that you need to be in church!  It is when you don’t feel like praying that your need for prayer is most critical!  If you don’t want to read the Word of God, the devil planted that thought.  Dive into the Word as soon as possible.  “Yes, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for you are with me; your rod and thy staff comfort me.”  Psalms 23:3-4 

Saul should have been the man to go out against Goliath.  He was anointed king of Israel. He had gone against other strong men.  He knew that Goliath symbolized the strength of the Philistines. But, Saul allowed Israel to fall into a dysfunctional kingdom.  He allowed it to be ruled by fear, to fall into low self-esteem, to suffer inner conflict, and to practice scapegoating.  Worst of all, Saul permitted Goliath to dictate the terms of the battle.  Spiritual “political correctness” scares many church goers today.  Many fear that they might make the devil mad if they speak too plainly.  But, living in the will of God also means you are living against the will of the devil.  You are swimming upstream; you are climbing up hill.  Every day you live victoriously you make the devil mad.  He is constantly probing your weaknesses, your vulnerabilities and your lapses in faith.  

The younger Saul wouldn’t have lent an ear to Goliath; it was the old Saul, the fearful Saul, the carnal Saul who did.  It wasn’t the Saul fresh from a prayer meeting that gave Goliath a forum to speak; it was a Saul whose prayers were stale and cold.  It wasn’t a Saul who walked in the strength of the Spirit who listened to Goliath: it was a Saul who flexed his own muscles and polished his own sword and shield.  It wasn’t a Saul who walked in the fear of God who let Goliath speak; it was a Saul who walked in fear.  But, David knew better.  Goliath had no right to defy the armies of the living God.  David didn’t measure Goliath by armor and spear.  By defending Israel’s boundary, he secured the Israel’s blessing.  

Set your boundaries and protect them from the enemy.  Your blessing resides in kept boundaries.

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