2 Samuel 1:17-27
Joshua 4:15-24 – The 12 Stones. Once the people carrying the rocks came out of the water, the Priests were told to come up and the water started flowing again (15-18). The people had been obedient and gathered the 12 stones one for each of the 12 ancestral tribes. The one thing we need to understand about the Lord is, He doesn’t tell us why he wants something done, He wants us to be obedient. Those rocks that they gathered, as heavy as they may have been, were to be put to use in the same way that the stuff that was taken from Egyptians (19-24). Personal Notes: If the Lord explained everything he asked us to do, we would never get anything done. We are not G-d’s counselor and nor will ask us our opinion because His ways have worked for thousands of years and ours have failed for the same amount of time ().
Psalms 61 – Lead Me to The Rock. Trusting in the Lord, as I have said before, is easy when nothing is confronting you, the winds of adversity are calm, and the sunshine of providence guides your pathway. When the storm clouds gather, the winds begin to blow, and hail hammers down on your home, we become fearful just like the disciples in the boat. It is in those times that our faith is put to the test (1-3, Luke 8:22-25). In the game “Tag”, there is a designated “safe spot” that you can run to and not be tagged. In some ways, that’s how view the Kingdom of G-d as a “safe spot” and then wonder why our walk with the Lord is so abysmal (4-5). To David, the Lord G-d was the breath that he breathed and the life that he lived and his life and kingdom were proof of it even when he slipped to the further place, G-d was still the G-d he served (6-8). Personal Notes: The Lord wants us to have a walk with the Lord that is unbreakable. The problem is, it takes work, dedication, and patience. When David failed, his critics believed his reign was over with and the mighty David would become “history” but that’s not what happened. David would have to contend with his sins for the rest of his life that would not change.
Proverbs 22:1-16 – Proverbs For Life. Of all the things that we should garner in life, at the top of the list is a “good name”. If our name is no good or it is not respected, all of the plans for our lives are meaningless (1). Having a good name is not limited to the rich nor poor, tall or small, black or white, but is a quality that everyone can and should have (2-3). When we carefully consider our lives and work to build up a life that is pleasing to G-d, we will have enduring riches and not be afraid of every storm or trial that comes our way (4-5). Along that same vein is the parental requirement to train our children that they will be equipped for the ministry ahead of them (6-9). Regrettably, there will always be those times when we need to cut people out of our lives who are causing problems and refuse correction (10-16). Personal Notes: David’s ascension to the throne began the moment Samuel prophesied. It was approximately 15 years from the time of David’s anointing to the day he ascended to the throne. During those years, a lot happened that could have cost him the throne.
Acts 27 – Paul Sails For Rome. Because Paul wanted to appeal his case to the Emporer, he had to travel to Italy which meant a lengthy sea approximately 1300 nautical miles and the ships were powered by sails. Unfortunately, they sail in late August after Pentecost which meant that they would deal with the fall winds and weather that were predominant in that region (1-2). The soldier in charge of the prisoners decided to set sail against Paul’s counsel which would cause problems for the people specifically when the winds began to blow. At one point they tried lightening the load which did not help them. Because of the heavy seas and high winds, the people did not eat most likely because their stomachs were in turmoil (21-22). Paul encouraged the people to eat and take courage because G-d had given him a message that he would make it to Rome (23-26). When the seas and winds act as they did, it is very difficult to know for sure about anything other than “stop these storms”. In the end, the ship ran aground on Malta (39-42). Personal Notes: Paul had been through too much not to trust the Lord at His word. In the storms that confront us, it is easy to think “this is as good as it gets” not knowing how much more the Lord has in mind for us.
2 Samuel 1:17-27 – David’s Lament for Saul and Jonathan. The book of Jashar is a lost book that contained poems that included references to Joshua, Debra, and David. Jashar is interpreted as, “victorious” or “upright” (17-18, ). Remember Saul was like a father to David and Jonathan was like a brother and David loved both men as he did his biological father and brothers. When you read about the times Saul chased David like a dog, you would think David would rejoice because his time to rule Israel was on the horizon (19-21). Mount Gilboa would resonate with David as the place his family died and would be a holy place (22-24). Saul was still the king although he made mistakes in judgment that would cost him the enduring kingdom (25-27). Personal Notes: In the interim years between the prophecy and the ascension to the throne, David did the right things when faced with choices. This is an important thing to remember for anyone that is preparing to step into a leadership role. The problem is that situations that should have brought joy end in sorrow because of the things that we did before stepping into the roles.