David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. But David found strength in the LORD his God. 1 Samuel 30:6

Imagine what it would be like to come home to find your home nothing more than a pile of smoldering rubble. Upon questioning neighbors you learn that your family has been kidnapped as well! In those few short moments you have lost everything that was once near and dear to you. Then, as though part of a horrible nightmare, people around you accuse you of being at fault for all of this tragedy!

This was the situation that King David faced in 1 Samuel 30:6. This was a time in David’s career when he was very popular among the people. He was just returning with his men from helping a neighboring King fight a battle. As the warriors came over the final hill they saw what was left of their city. It was nothing more than a pile of smoldering rubble.

The good news, if you can call it that, is that no one was killed. But where were the wives, the sons, the daughters? How many enemies had taken them? Then there was the sheer fatigue and anguish. The Bible says that the men cried until they could cry no more. In the midst of their anguish the men started to murmur against their leader. IF he hadn’t taken all of them off to battle this wouldn’t have happened. IF he’d left some men behind to guard the city they’d be sitting down to supper with their little boys and girls and getting a good night sleep in their own beds with the women they loved.

Their murmuring grew into threats and David soon heard that they were about to stone him! It’s hard to imagine what made David feel worse. Was it the fact that his own two wives were among the missing? Was it the fact that his own life was still in danger from Saul? Was it seeing these men, whom he loved in such anguish? Was it the ruins of his city? Perhaps it was the fact that these men, whom he loved dearly and whom he’d done so much for had now turned on him. All his training and protection and provision for them didn’t matter. In this time of crisis they turned their backs on the one that had done so much for them.

There are times in each of our lives when we may feel like David. We pour ourselves into the lives of others. We try to help them through times of need and struggle. It could be a friend, a child, a parent, or even a total stranger. But then something goes wrong and all of the sudden we are the ones to be blamed.

In the midst of his personal despair, at a time when he’d lost everything of physical value and now his closest friends had turned against him, David did what each of us must do when we are attacked. David turned to God. He got alone in a quiet place and asked God what he should do. He didn’t lash out at his attackers. He didn’t defend himself. He didn’t try to place the blame on God, the men themselves, or even the enemy. He met with God and formulated a plan to rescue the women, children and material possessions that had been taken.

When things go horribly wrong in your life, follow David’s example. First of all, don’t give up. Don’t let yourself get sucked into the ‘poor little old me’ mindset. Then, like David, pick yourself up and go to the one that will never leave you, never forsake you and always be a loyal, trusted friend. God allows adversity and tragedy in our lives in order to teach us to trust him and not men. He alone can bring you through whatever you are facing today. You may be betrayed by your closest friends, but God will never ever forsake you.

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, I thank you for the story of David. Thank you for the reminder that when those I thought were my closest allies fail me; I can always turn to you. Show me how I can trust you to resolve conflicts. Give me strength to pick myself up and move on. Empower me with your Holy Spirit to trust you in all things. Amen.