David Encouraged Himself in the Lord—So Can You

by | Sep 1, 2022 | Fire in My Bones, Magazine Articles, Sept-Oct 2022

David’s name appears in the Bible 971 times, more than any other individual except Jesus. David went through many struggles, failures and battles, yet he stayed faithful to God. He knew how to keep spiritually strong even when his trials overwhelmed him.

David’s worst day is described in 1 Samuel 30, when the Amalekites raided his camp at Ziklag. These terrorists kidnapped the women and children, torched the city and looted everything. To make matters worse, David’s own warriors blamed him for the disaster. They were so angry they talked about stoning him.

This type of pressure can trigger nervous breakdowns, angry outbursts or abrupt resignations, but David didn’t quit—even when his friends turned against him. First Samuel 30:6 says: “But David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.”

How did he do that? The Bible doesn’t give specifics. All we know is that after he found supernatural strength, the battle turned and David and his army killed the marauders and recovered everything they had stolen. A really bad day turned into an astounding victory.

I know people who’ve been traumatized by the events of the past two years. Some of them quit ministry jobs; others have withdrawn from friends; many have plunged into depression. Stress has the power to derail us. I can’t say I’ve faced anything as traumatic as an Amalekite raid, but I’ve learned a few secrets about how to find encouragement during hard times. Here are a few pointers:

Take a praise break. When Paul and Silas found themselves in a Philippian jail, they sang hymns and praised God until an earthquake rocked the building and their chains fell off. Praise has power. David wrote in Psalm 27:6: “And now my head will be lifted up above my enemies around me, and I will offer in His tent sacrifices with shouts of joy.” You must learn to sing when you don’t feel like it, because praise resets our souls and unlocks heaven’s answers.

Withdraw from the stress. When I was younger, I learned that a warrior’s bow must sometimes be unstrung in order to be effective in battle. If your bowstring is always taut, your arrows won’t hit the target. You can’t stay in the heat of battle day after day. You must learn to withdraw, rest and recharge. Unstring your bow, take a walk or sit on your back porch and drink some iced tea. While you relax, remind yourself that God is fighting your battles, not you.

Recall moments of God’s goodness. You can’t remember all of God’s benefits unless you write them down! When you are tempted to doubt God’s faithfulness, savor all the moments He answered prayers in the past. The same God who helped you 15 years ago can repeat the same miracle. He has not changed!

Wage war with your promises. Timothy faced dark, demonic resistance when he pastored the church in Ephesus. That’s why Paul told him to “fight the good fight” using “the prophecies made concerning you” (1 Tim. 1:18). When I face discouragement, I recall the promises God gave me in the past. These words are like anchors that hold me steady in rough seas. Prophetic words boost my faith so I can gain a second wind.

Remember what friends have told you.
First Samuel 23:16 says: “Jonathan, Saul’s son, arose and went to David at Horesh, and encouraged him in God.” I suspect Jonathan’s comforting words lingered in David’s soul long after his friend spoke them. When David encouraged “himself” in 1 Samuel 30:6, he could have been meditating on what Jonathan said many months prior.

I’m grateful every time a friend sends me an encouraging text, or calls me with an uplifting message. In every case I save the words because I know I will need them later. A friend’s encouragement is not like manna that spoils after a day, or dew that evaporates in the morning sun. The words of a Jonathan are like engraved jewelry, and if you keep them locked in a treasure chest you can pull them out on your worst days.

Don’t faint. Don’t quit. Don’t sink into despair. Learn to encourage yourself in the Lord. If you practice these habits of David, you will find the strength to fight every battle.

J. Lee Grady was editor of Charisma for 11 years and now serves as contributing editor. He directs the Mordecai Project (themordecaiproject.org), an international ministry that protects women and girls from gender-based violence. His latest books are Follow Me and Let’s Go Deeper (Charisma House).

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Will the New Set of Seven Years on the Jewish Calendar Be Our Last?

Will the New Set of Seven Years on the Jewish Calendar Be Our Last?

Note: This is the second of a two-part series. For part one, click here. Beginning at sunset on Sunday, Sept. 25, our Jewish friends (and increasingly many Christians) will begin a two-day celebration of Rosh Hashanah, their time for new beginnings or a "new year."...

Is America Preparing the Way for a One-World Ruler?

Is America Preparing the Way for a One-World Ruler?

The culmination of history is approaching. The end of the world may be at hand. Yet Jesus tells us we should not be alarmed. Why? Because we are engraved in the palms of His hands. Because we are carried in His arms. Because we are the apple of His eye. The time is...

A ‘Davidic Anointing’ is Descending Upon Musical Instruments

A ‘Davidic Anointing’ is Descending Upon Musical Instruments

I once heard a testimony where the Holy Ghost was falling upon the people during worship. The preacher, R.W. Schambach, testified how the piano player got so filled with the Spirit that she fell off of the piano bench and the piano kept right on playing. No other...

Joyce Meyer: How You Can Make God’s Love Your Lifestyle

Joyce Meyer: How You Can Make God’s Love Your Lifestyle

I have made it a priority to study about love in the Word of God. Getting a revelation about how much God loves me and learning to receive His love has been life-changing for me. It’s been the key to being able to really enjoy my life because when I received God’s...

Mario Murillo: What God is Saying About America’s Destruction

Mario Murillo: What God is Saying About America’s Destruction

Many prophetic words released today shout one of these two headlines: America Is Past Hope and Will Be Destroyed America Is Favored and Will Never Be Destroyed Facebook oozes with voices claiming to be prophets or mouthpieces for God. The internet teems with...

How The Christian Community Can Change American Politics for Good

How The Christian Community Can Change American Politics for Good

A fascinating discovery has taken place recently in the state of California. Locals there attest that the wildfires that have ravaged the landscape, lives and livelihoods of residents for a decade don’t seem to be getting any better. They seem to be getting worse,...

RECENT ARTICLES

Former Atheist: How the Deconstruction of Your Christian Faith Can Actually Strengthen It

Best-selling author Lee Strobel, an atheist and investigative journalist who failed to disprove the resurrection of Jesus during two years of digging for evidence, believes Christians who properly...
Rod Parsley: Are You the Pharisee or the Tax Collector?

Rod Parsley: Are You the Pharisee or the Tax Collector?

As with all virtues, humility has an opposite: pride. It should not surprise us that revival and restoration begins with humility, because all “falling away” begins with pride. Pride sent the archangel Lucifer plummeting from the heights of glorious splendor near the...

What to Do with an Urgent Warning from the Lord

What to Do with an Urgent Warning from the Lord

Many people are receiving urgent warnings from the Lord about things taking place in the earth. Releasing those warnings can be difficult. Done the wrong way, people will turn a deaf ear and the last thing you want to do is breed fear. Maybe you aren't getting...

Prophetic Word: ‘You Will Taste the Rain of Heaven’

Prophetic Word: ‘You Will Taste the Rain of Heaven’

Get ready for a supernatural strength to take over the land. It is time for worldwide revival and for you to reclaim what God has promised. Don’t back down and give in to despair. God’s plan is in motion. I heard the Lord say, “The enemy has brought discouragement and...

Mario Murillo: The Fuse to a National Awakening

Mario Murillo: The Fuse to a National Awakening

A lot of churchgoers yearn for soothing sermons. Meanwhile, a growing company seeks to understand authority, brokenness and Resurrection life. Who are these “others” who have their eyes wide open? They are too loud for most. They pray longer and deeper than what is...

The Value of the Golden Aged Among Us

The Value of the Golden Aged Among Us

Sarah bore Isaac when she was 90 years old. Moses led the Israelites out of bondage when he was 80. God cared for them, carried them, and used them! If you are nearing or are already in your golden years, don’t despair. You have much to offer to those behind you. You...

Pin It on Pinterest