As I read through the Old Testament, I find my faith greatly encouraged by the example David set. I am awed by his determination to hear from God in the midst of his perilous times.
After one battle, David and his army were making a three-day trip back home when their village was suddenly raided by the Amalekites. This fierce enemy kidnapped the families of David and his men and burned down the whole town. Imagine the scene as they returned: “So David and his men came to the city, and there it was, burned with fire; and their wives, their sons, and their daughters had been taken captive” (1 Samuel 30:3).
I picture these mighty men walking about stunned and bewildered, crying out in agony, “How could this happen? Why would God allow it?”
“Then David and the people who were with him lifted up their voices and wept, until they had no more power to weep” (30:4, my italics).
This scene from David’s life shows us there is most certainly a time to weep when calamity strikes. After all, this was no small disaster. It wasn’t just the loss of homes, cattle or crops that caused David’s mighty men to weep; they would soon get over that. Rather, it was the threat to their beloved wives and children that pierced their very souls. And what followed this scene could have been even more disastrous for David: “David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved” (30:6).
Beloved, even the most godly among us can experience a trembling of heart, a sudden rush of fear, when a terrible crisis comes. At such a time, it isn’t a sin to have a moment of deep anxiety. But the Lord wants every weary, troubled heart to hear: “Fear not! Take courage, for the Lord is a Savior to His people.”