Stones and Words
In the midst of our darkest moments, have you ever wondered if God would send someone to confront you with harsh words? David, the second king of Israel, faced such a situation when his own son, Absalom, seized the throne from him. As David fled Jerusalem barefoot and in tears over the Mount of Olives, he encountered both friends and enemies, including a man named Shimei.
Critics Surface in Our Darkest Moments
“When King David came to Bahurim, behold, there came out from there a man of the family of the house of Saul whose name was Shimei, the son of Gera; he came out cursing continually as he came.” 2 Samuel 16:5 (NASB1995)
Shimei, a descendant of Saul’s family, emerged from a village to curse David and throw stones at him. In 2 Samuel 16:5, we see Shimei’s vengeful resentment, a result of surviving the bloodletting that ensued when David ascended to power. Even in David’s weakest moment, Shimei seized the opportunity to take a verbal stab, revealing the power of hatred.
Responding with Violence Isn’t the Solution
“Then Abishai the son of Zeruiah said to the king, “Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Let me go over now and cut off his head.”” 2 Samuel 16:9 (NASB1995)
David’s soldier, Abishai, was ready to silence Shimei with violence, but David stopped him. In verse 10, David acknowledges that if the Lord allowed Shimei to curse him, who were they to intervene? This highlights the importance of restraint in the face of verbal attacks, trusting in God’s sovereignty.
God’s Sovereignty in Times of Trouble
Then David said to Abishai and to all his servants, “My own son is trying to kill me. Doesn’t this relative of Saul have even more reason to do so? Leave him alone and let him curse, for the Lord has told him to do it.” 2 Samuel 16:11 (NLT)
Despite Shimei’s partially truthful accusations, David recognized God’s sovereignty in his life. He understood that the trials he faced were not outside of God’s control. This perspective allowed David to endure the pain and trust in God’s plan, even when confronted with harsh words.
Seeking God’s Salvation in Adversity
But you, O Lord, are a shield around me; you are my glory, the one who holds my head high. Psalm 3:3 (NLT)
David, despite the adversity he faced due to his own mistakes, cried out to God for salvation. In Psalm 3, composed during this difficult time, David acknowledges God as his shield and the lifter of his head. This exemplifies the importance of turning to God for deliverance in the midst of personal failures and challenges.
Embracing God’s Plan Amidst Pain
“”This is what the LORD says: Because of what you have done, I will cause your own household to rebel against you…” 2 Samuel 12:11 (NLT)
David’s story reflects that God allowed him to go through pain to bring about a change in his heart. Even though Shimei misunderstood God’s intentions, David recognized the fulfillment of God’s words spoken through the prophet Nathan. This teaches us to embrace God’s plan in times of pain, knowing that He works all things for the good of those who love Him.
Here are 5 things to know to help you through trials:
God is in Control: Despite the troubles we face, God remains in control, allowing certain events to unfold according to His plan.
“Trust in Him at all times, O people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us. Selah.” Psalm 62:8 (NASB1995)
Sovereignty Over Trouble: God may not cause every trouble, but He retains control over all situations, even in the face of adversity.
“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28 (NASB1995)
Seeking God in Pain: Like David, we should turn to God during challenging times, recognizing that only He can provide true salvation.
“The righteous cry, and the LORD hears And delivers them out of all their troubles. The LORD is near to the brokenhearted And saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:17-18 (NASB1995)
Confession and Change: Acknowledge wrongdoing and seek God’s forgiveness, understanding that our own solutions may lead to further troubles.
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9 (NASB1995)
Trusting in God’s Plan: Even in the darkest hours, trust in God’s plan, knowing that He works all things together for the good of those who love Him.
“The LORD is my light and my salvation— so why should I be afraid? The LORD is my fortress, protecting me from danger, so why should I tremble?” Psalm 27:1 (NLT)
God’s Unfailing Love
In your own journey, as you face challenges and question God’s control, remember that your story is still being written. Engage in honest conversations with God, confessing your doubts or frustrations. God’s love is unfailing, and He is in control, working everything out for good according to His purpose. Hold onto His promises, especially in the darkest moments, and experience the transformative power of His love.