“He makes me lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside quiet waters.
He restores my soul.”
—Psalm 23: 2-3
There are some difficult verses in the Bible, but just as it says how searching for a pearl is profitable, so too are some principles that are also hidden, which too often are never spoken about.
While searching for this verse in 2 Samuel this morning, I was surprised that it took me so long. Honestly, it took me forever to find it, but I just knew I needed to read it again and again, and also study it in several versions to get a deeper meaning.
The reason it was so important I find and study this verse is that within it is a gem that I knew He had spoken to my heart—after yet another slandering attack was hurled at me personally and publicly. The first verse (below) coincides with this principle, which can also lay the foundation for you to understand the more difficult verse that follows.
“Not an eye for an eye, and tooth for tooth; but I — I say to you, not to resist the evil, but whoever shall slap you on the right cheek, turn to him also the other.” Matthew 5:39 YLT
“Then David said to Abishai and to all his servants, ‘Behold, my son who came out from me seeks my life; how much more now this Benjamite? Let him alone and let him curse... [Perchance] the Lord will look on my affliction and return good to me instead of his cursing this day.’ So David and his men went on the way; and Shimei went along on the hillside parallel with him and as he went he cursed and cast stones and threw dust at him. The king and all the people who were with him arrived weary and he refreshed himself there.’” 2 Samuel 16:11-12
Perchance is the word I memorized years ago, the word I was searching for, which is defined: by some chance; perhaps. synonyms: maybe, perhaps, possibly, for all one knows, it could be, it's possible, conceivably.
Interestingly, too, that dust was mentioned because dust is often a representation of shame and grief in the Bible. It’s why those who lost loved ones threw dust over their heads and is why we are told to shake dust off our feet.
Let me explain that this is the period of time in David’s life when he is running from his own son, Absalom, who is out to destroy him. Sadly, now that the days are becoming increasingly evil as we get closer to the end times, more and more godly parents will sadly have to experience this heartbreak.
Yet, today, what I want you to see in this wonderful principle that’s so painfully difficult for us to do, and yet, like every other principle we are able to grasp and then embrace—by embracing this difficult but powerful truth we will experience unmeasurable rewards.
Not only is David refusing to resist the evil done to him, but he stops others from preventing the evil from happening. And the reason is found when he ponders why. Perhaps…
“Perhaps God will look on my affliction” is what David hopes He will get from God. Rather than stopping attacks, he is looking to God to return good to him. And as we know, the true, lasting and most powerful blessings don’t come from man or this world—they come from God.
As I said when I began this living lesson, more and more slandering attacks have been hurled at me personally and publicly. And the main reason He told me that I have to experience these attacks is because He is about to bring me and this ministry up higher. I’m not sure if the attacks also help to humble us or force us to draw closer to the Lord because we will need Him more, or if it’s simply that the enemy is trying to stop what God is about to do. If I had to guess I believe it’s all three of these reasons and possibly, even more I am not yet spiritually mature enough to comprehend. Nevertheless, I want to be able to not just accept this but embrace this principle into my life, and not just for my own sake, but for what I believe He wants to do and how He wants to use RMI and RMI’s ministers even more.
In all honesty, I can say, “Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press forward so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching [pressing] forward to what lies ahead, I press on forward toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:12-14
What about you?
In today’s world, even within the church, no one speaks or lives this very difficult principle. Instead, we are taught from the pulpit that we should defend ourselves and that the evil that’s done to us is going to destroy us.
Of course, this IS true, it’s another part of the enemy’s scheme, but not so for the believer who is called to live a higher calling. And it’s also not so that we, as believers, can be praised nor impress others, but for us to handle it well for the sole purpose of allowing the Lord to write His Good News in the epistle of our lives. The epistle of our lives which people read every day.
This means that we must live our lives in such a way that the world sees that even though an enemy is out to hurt and destroy us, with Him, we can walk through it and not just get through it, but benefit from it in the end. This, dear one, is simply called a testimony, which is important that we obtain in order to help others overcome the wicked one.
“And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even to death.” Revelation 12:11
Note too, your testimony doesn’t begin or end with the restoration of your marriage. Your testimony is each time one of His promises is fulfilled and you live a lesson, you live a principle and have Good News that should be shared to minister to those who are hungry, thirsty and desperate.
Living this lesson begins with how you handle small rumors within your own families, where you work or in your neighborhood. When you can pass the smaller insults, without defending yourself, He then will continue to advance both you and the level of attacks in order to use you at an even higher level and greater blessings that follow.
Yes, because we are human, we prefer praise and accolades or applause from others, but when we yearn for it, we become dangerously close to becoming God’s enemy.
“Friendship with the world is hostility toward God. Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” James 4:4.
Because today’s message is very difficult for most of us to accept, please STOP now (or make a date later) to selah what you’ve learned, in other words, meditate on everything. Look up the verses I’ve shared and meditate on them. And as always, set a time to spend with your Heavenly Father. ASK Him to show you how to apply this message to your life. Then sit quietly and listen 😉 to His immense wisdom.