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« Who Knew? The People God Puts in Your Life (Part Two) | Main | The Middleman »

Who Knew? The People God Puts in Your Life (Part One)

We begin our Christian life in a personal relationship with God.  We soon discover, however, that our continuing walk with him puts us into a world of people.  Some of them help us, some of them hinder us, but all of them must be dealt with.  A biographical sketch of David from the perspective of the people God interwove into his life provides a rich background for our own associations.  

The Unknown Servant.  An anonymous servant endorsed young David, jump-starting his career.  “Then one of the servants answered and said, “Look, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite, who is skillful in playing, a mighty man of valor, a man of war, prudent in speech, and a handsome person; and the LORD is with him.” 1 Samuel 16:18. 

The grace of God sees to it that unnamed persons contribute to who we are and what happens to us.  We should take care not to take undeserved credit and glory for the blessings and benefits of life.  1 Corinthians 4:6-7. 

The Benevolent Dictator.  “Then Saul sent to Jesse, saying, ‘Please let David stand before me, for he has found favor in my sight.’”  1 Samuel 16:22. King Saul knew David long before the Goliath incident.  Although Saul’s favor was short-lived, he gave David a chance to minister to him and use his talents. 

Somewhere in your life, God has put a person who will deal kindly with you and open doors that otherwise would stay closed.  Be grateful for this person and show them appreciation.  David never forgot that he received something valuable from Saul.  

The Jealous Brother.  “Now Eliab his oldest brother heard when he spoke to the men; and Eliab’s anger was aroused against David, and he said, ‘Why did you come down here? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your pride and the insolence of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.’” 1 Samuel 17:28.  Eliab was the first person to despise David.  In truth, this older brother was covering up for his own cowardice.  Older and stronger than David, Eliab should have confronted Goliath instead of David.  David did not allow Eliab to throw him off course.  In fact, his courage benefited all of Israel, including his jealous brother. 

You will meet people who have a world of problems of their own yet would rather criticize you than deal with their own shortcomings.  Many times, they attempt to heal themselves by hurting others.  They will lie on you, criticize you, refuse to treat you with respect and undermine everything you do. You can try to make such people stop their destructive behavior, but it usually does no good.  Your reaction must neutralize their hatred and reverse it.  

The Mortal Enemy.  “And when the Philistine looked about and saw David, he disdained him; for he was only a youth, ruddy and good-looking.  So, the Philistine said to David, ‘Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. And the Philistine said to David, ‘Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!’” 1 Samuel 17:42-44.  Goliath hated the God of Israel and the Israelites.  David only became a personal enemy after he answered the challenges of the giant. 

There will be people in our lives who put us in their crosshairs and vow to destroy us.  They live in our neighborhoods work at our offices and factories or even share in the same family with us.  Remember two things about these people: (1) Don’t take their threats and curses personally.  That will only hinder your ability to do the right thing.  If you end up hating someone and trying to get personal revenge, you will lose the battle. (2) Sanctify every response by the name of the Lord.  Our weapons don’t consist of slings and swords but praying in the Holy Ghost.  “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God.” 2 Corinthians 10:3-4.

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