Pastor Rick's desire is that you know God more intimately and get biblical insights like this in a weekly devotional.
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God does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him.

—Psalm 103:10-11

How many times has this happened to you? God sees you in trouble or in a Jam, so HE Graciously steps in and rescues us from a hostile or life threatening situation.  Yet often times we show our gratitude…by running back to that which he delivered us from.

I will never forget when I was a foolish young teen, I went with some friends to Red River Gorge, Kentucky. We spent the weekend camping out. Saturday morning we got up and started drinking. Then we decided to go cliff climbing, of all things. The foolish, shameful things we do while under the influence of drugs or alcohol…. That is why I call it - Liquid Stupid!

Well we climbed a cliff near Natural Bridge known as Lovers Leap. It was a several hundred foot rock face. We climbed about ¾ of the way up and took a break on a ledge to eat something. After a brief time, I got up to stretch my legs and I lost my balance and fell approximately 50 feet before being stopped by a tree growing out of the cliff. When I hit that tree, it knocked me out. I woke up a few minutes later. As I examined my precarious situation, I remember that Tree wasn’t there when I was climbing up.

Then I heard God say to me, 'I love you and I have a plan for your life.'

God in His mercy, didn’t allow me to reap what I so rightly deserved. How many times has He done that for you? Saved you from yourself?

He graciously allows us to live, to even repeat our sins again and again, in hopes that one day we will come to our senses, recognize our foolishness and rebellion and come back to thank Him.

If you are in a jam right now, and searching for a way out…God says in Isaiah 45:22…."Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: For I am God, and there is no other."

Then David said to Abiathar the priest, Ahimelech’s son, “Bring me the ephod.” And Abiathar brought the ephod to David. So David inquired of the Lord, saying, “Shall I pursue this troop? Shall I overtake them?” God answered him, “Pursue, for you shall surely overtake them and without fail… recover all.”

—1 Samuel 30:7-8

David’s back is against the wall, he is up to his eye balls in trouble…and he says, Bring me the Ephod….meaning, I want to hear from the Lord…I want to know the Lords will.

The Ephod was a special apron that the Priest wore over his clothing. Attached to it was a gold breast plate that had 12 stones in it, each one representing one of the 12 tribes of Israel. The High Priest wore these stones over his heart, which tells us that God held the 12 tribes of Israel close to His heart.

The Ephod had a pouch that held two stones, the Urim and the Thummin. Urim in Hebrew means Light, Thummin means Perfections. Together their names mean, Perfect Knowledge. These stones help the High Priest to know the will of God.

Exodus 28:30…New Living Translation (NLT) God commanded Moses…Insert the Urim and Thummim into the sacred chest piece so they will be carried over Aaron’s heart when he goes into the Lord’s presence. In this way, Aaron will always carry over his heart the objects used to determine the Lord’s will for his people whenever he goes in before the Lord.

It is believed that one of these stones was White, the other Black. The white indicated the answer from God was YES, the Black meant Gods answer was No. The idea is that High Priest would ask God a question that could be answered with a "yes" or a "no," reach into the breastplate, and pull out the stone indicating God's answer.

David asked two questions, “Shall I pursue this troop? Shall I overtake them? 9 simple words…it was a very short prayer God answered back right away; “Pursue, for you shall surely overtake them and without fail… recover all.”

It doesn’t take as much time as we might think to receive an answer to our prayer from God. God is often quick in his response. The truth of the matter, God wants to speak to us, he longs to speak to us, and us to Him. He desires and does answer our prayers. And to those who pray believing. He is also often quick in his answers to our prayers; But we must be attentive and listening.

When the enemy comes in like a flood and it seems as though our life is falling apart. We need to know we can run to God…we can stand on His word and Promises and that when we seek His help and guidance, he wants to answer.

Jeremiah 33:3, God said, "Call unto Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do n to know.

Do you believe?

Are you attentive?

Are you listening?

I will lift up my eyes to the hills—From whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel Shall neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper....

—Psalm 121:1-5a

We live in a dangerous world, there are enemies all around, who would like to attack and destroy us. But as we walk in the light of Gods truth… and depend upon Gods divine power and guidance, He will be there to watch over and keep us. It doesn’t mean we won’t suffer pain or difficulty, but He won’t allow us to be harmed. Our soul to be destroyed. He will preserve our Soul…as David would testify this is true.

Some people sit back and say, Lord if You have good things for me then bring them to me. The Lord, however, would answer, take a step of faith, I’ll be with you. God doesn’t want us to be passive people, he wants us engaged, fighting in the battle, be part of the process.

1 Kings 19, When Elijah was hiding in a Cave, fearing for his life….the Lord came to him and said, what are you doing here Elijah? I have work for you, things for you to do. Stop cowering, Get moving.

Perhaps God has you in a tough spot. Your friends and family misunderstand you, perhaps reject you. Your life seems to be falling apart. You are wondering, Why Lord, have You allowed this? We can learn from life's experiences that sometimes God is trying to grow us up spiritually. Perhaps He is preparing you for something in your future. So He sends trials that leave us with no choice but to turn to God.

God allowed suffering in David's life and he cried out to God for help. Then God turned David's defeat into a great victory. He can do for us what He did for David …Turn our defeat into Victory... If we will look to Him for help.

"Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me, For my soul trusts in You; And in the shadow of Your wings I will make my refuge, Until these calamities have passed by."

—Psalm 57:1

Pretty amazing words for a man who is on the run?! Singing praise to God can be difficult enough, but David turns his nightmare into a song of praise to God.

David chose to trust in God and his promises of Protection. In the midst of his trial and suffering he drew as close to the Lord as he could, so close, in fact, he made God's shadow his abode. And he was determined to remain there.

David had tremendous faith in God to keep His promises. He expected God to send help from heaven to help him. David remembered how merciful God had been to him in the past, how he saved him from the lion, the bear and Goliath. So he waits in eager anticipation of how God would deliver him from this trial.

While David was in the Cave of Adullan, he couldn’t do much to deliver himself… but God could…and did, intervene for him. So David prayed, I can't wait to see how You work this out. Let Your glory shine above all the earth, God. Let your name be exalted!

David could sing praise to God because he had a fixed heart. God no matter how dark things may appear, I am Yours and I trust in You.

How is your faith?

Have you sought the Lord in eager anticipation of His answer?

Praise God for His faithfulness and His deliverance to those who seek His face in prayer.

My soul is among lions; I lie among the sons of men Who are set on fire, Whose teeth are spears and arrows, And their tongue a sharp sword.

—Psalm 57:4

David found himself surrounded by a band of bitter malcontents….whose words and tongues were sharp as a sword. And David is now their Captain.


This perhaps was not the group David would have chosen for himself, but these are the ones God gave to him. And David had the task of turning these bitter souls into a well-organized, disciplined, fighting force. And amazingly, because God was with him, he did exactly that.

These are the men whom David will later describe as his Mighty men of Valor…bold, fearless, courageous. Many of their names and their great achievement’s are written in the bible.

God allows all of us to face challenges like these. Perhaps you have a business that has disaster written all over it. With Gods Help and wisdom, you can turn that business around.

Or maybe you are in a broken relationship with little hope of recovery. With Gods help and Wisdom, He can use you to turn that relationship around.

Or perhaps you have teenagers at home who need constant discipline and attention and you're tired of the demands. Be encouraged, If God could use David to take 400 malcontents and turn them into Mighty men of valor, God can turn your valley of bitter sorrows into a trail of refreshing springs.

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