The Beloved series is foundational and so rich. Pastor Josiah recapped some gems and applications. David killed Goliath with the giant’s own sword. The enemy’s weapons can become the weapons of choice against that enemy. For Beloved’s Identity, the greatest mistakes can become their greatest mission, and they can return to those places to help pull out others from the quick sand from which they escaped. Think of your past and the sword He has given you to help pull out someone who is struggling like you did. You have a testimony of what He did for you, and you can be a vessel too.
David’s father in law Saul, continued to hunt him, and David escaped to the cave of Adullam (which means “justice of the people”). In 1 Samuel 22:2 “Then others began coming-men who were in trouble or in debt or who were discontented-until David was the captain of 400 men.” These 400 were not the most skilled soldiers but were in trouble, in debt or discontented. They were desperate.
“Desperation is a powerful tool of transformation.” Think of the woman who bled for twelve years. She had exhausted all her resources on doctors and treatments that did not cure her. The unnamed woman was unclean and was desperate for a solution.
“She said to herself,’If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.’
Jesus turned and saw her.’Take heart, daughter,’ he said,
’your faith has healed you.’ And the woman was healed
` at that moment.” Matthew 9:20-22 (NIV)
She reached out and touched the hem of His garment after which healing flowed out from Him.
She had been stuck in a horrible health situation, but she reached out to the Savior who healed her.
Another significant point is “He will fight battles for you that we should not be fighting.” We need to stay close to Him, to protect our commitment to Him; and to be saturated in His love with the realization that we are His Beloved. We need to get back to falling in love with Jesus and daily reading His love letter. It is so easy to fight peripheral issues instead of focusing on the main one-Jesus. Wasting our energies on the extraneous is a dead end.
When trials come and they will, we will either run from Jesus or run to Jesus. James advised
“Count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that
the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have
its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking
nothing.” James 1:2-4 (NKJV)
The end goal is perfection, completeness and lacking nothing. May we run to Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.
Pastor Josiah cited several verses that we can put in our arsenal when we are in battle. They show us God’s power and commitment. “With God’s help we will do mighty things, for he will trample our foe.” Psalm 60:12 (NLT) I love that God promises to trample our foe, but we need to stay focused on Him, our Redeemer and Restorer.
Just this morning I read Psalm 91 and luxuriated in who He is and who I am in Him, Beloved.
“He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the LORD,’He is my refugee and my fortress;
My God, in Him will I trust.’” Psalm 91:1-2 (NKJV)
The secret is to dwell in the place of the Most High-making Him the main thing in life and not getting bogged down in extraneous distractions.
Another important point is “Beloved Identity draws the broken.” Four hundred men followed David, whose name means beloved. Both men and God loved David. “Beloved Identity is a shared identity with Jesus.” At the Echo Drive location of Faith Chapel, the words “Whosoever Will, May Come” welcomed people as they walked up to the church. That was Pastor George Gregg’s invitation. And in the 70’s, we came in droves. Some were shoeless, long haired, and unkempt, but all were welcomed as we heard that Jesus came for us all.
Your “response to failure is often a defining moment.” First is David’s response in the cave of Adullam; he composed a psalm to the LORD, and it showed his devotion and faith in the LORD.
“Have mercy on me, my God, have mercy on me,
for in you I take refuge. I will take refuge in the shadows
of your wings until the disaster has passed.
I cry out to the God Most High, to God, who
` vindicates me.” Psalm 57:1-2 (NIV)
His crazed father in law chased David and tried to murder him several times. How did David respond? He cried out to the LORD. May I cry out to the LORD in those hard and celebrate in the hallelujah times.
Second are the two unforgettable disciples who responded differently to the LORD after they had rejected Jesus. Peter denied Jesus three times, the night of His trials. Judas betrayed Jesus at Gethsemane and kissed Him indicating to the soldiers that Jesus was the one to be arrested. Both failed Jesus, but one repented, and the other tried unsuccessfully to return the thirty pieces of silver. Repentant Peter became a building block of the church whereas as Judas ended his life in shame and guilt. Jesus is our Restorer as long as we repent and have breath in our lungs.
In 1 Samuel 22 is the final point which has an interesting turn of events in that David asked the king of Moab
“‘Please allow my father and mother to live here with you
until I know what God is going to do for me.’
So David’s parents stayed in Moab with the king during
the entire time David was living in his stronghold.”
1 Samuel 22:3b-4 (NLT)
Why would David ask the king of Moab to allow his father and mother to live in his kingdom when these two kingdoms often fought with each other? According to scripture, David’s great-grandmother, Ruth, was a Moabitess and “The LORD enabled her to become pregnant, and she gave birth to a son.” Ruth 4:13 (NLT) Her son’s name was Obed which means serving. David’s grandfatherr was a Moabite, and Moab became a blessing to David and his parents. Because David loved his parents, he wanted to protect them against his current enemy, Saul. David honored his parents and felt they were safer in Moab than in Judah. How situations deteriorated.
The Paramount Point is “Honor shields the hearts of Beloved ones and blessings will surely follow.” May we keep Jesus the focus of our lives and be salt and light in this dark world.
10/27-Men’s Core meeting
10/31-Trunk or Treat-We need cars or trucks
11/16-LB sponsored staff Thanksgiving lunch from 12-2. Please see Mary Dinnen to sign up.
12/15-LB potluck, worship, and caroling
12/31-LB game night
Larry and Annette Linthicum