Read I Samuel 7–
So since I have started this challenge, truly I have been so refreshed by the power of God’s Word. And finally, after decades of being in church and reading the Bible, something dawned on me. Maybe I knew this before I was a mom, or even after, but really these days it is hard for me to remember much before yesterday! But I digress. Suffice it to say, it has been a while since I really grasped the point, or the purpose, of that morning time with the Lord. Especially since I am not a morning person! Unless you count being up till after 12am being a morning person, as technically, that is morning! (credit to Sarah Williams for that joke 🙂 ) But I remember thinking on those days that I had spent time reading the Bible in the morning, “Man, I can’t believe today is so awful! I even read my Bible this morning!!” Can I get a witness?? Am I the only one that ever thought that? But today, as my day got harder, instead I thought something different. I thought, “What was I reading this morning, Oh, yeah, Samuel, leading the Israelites to repentance, fighting the Phillistines, I think I need to read it again, but I can’t sit and read, I’ll listen to the audio.” And after about the 13th time through amidst the crazy happening all around me, I actually retained the storyline of the passage. This time I wasn’t expecting that one reading to magically alter the path of my day, instead I was meditating on it as I walked, or crawled along the path that I was given.
2 So it was that the ark remained in Kirjath Jearim a long time; it was there twenty years. And all the house of Israel lamented after the Lord.
3 Then Samuel spoke to all the house of Israel, saying, “If you return to the Lord with all your hearts, then put away the foreign gods and the Ashtoreths<sup class="footnote" value="[a]”>[a] from among you, and prepare your hearts for the Lord, and serve Him only; and He will deliver you from the hand of the Philistines.” 4 So the children of Israel put away the Baals and the Ashtoreths,<sup class="footnote" value="[b]”>[b] and served the Lord only.
How many times did they mess up? How many times did God take them back?
Today was a rough day. We are all exhausted from too much fun. And after completing their chores I tried to reward them with a trip to the pool, especially for my bouncing off the wall boys to get their energy out, but we had a short short time frame. Which can only mean one thing. It’s related to Murphy’s law, maybe you’ve experienced it, we’ll call it “Ira’s law” but it goes like this: “The shorter your time frame, the more likely you will at some point be cleaning up broken glass.” And since I had so little time, not only did our “fun” end with broken glass, but half of it was in the pool. And the reason was because of direct disobedience. And I overreacted. And although I managed to keep from yelling, I laid the shame on thick, which is worse. And it was wrong. And I felt awful. So I apologized and hugged, and regardless of the forgiveness in his face, it didn’t make me feel much better. So I fell back on my memory of my reading this morning. And suddenly it had more power. Reading about God’s repeated forgiveness was nice this morning, but leaning upon it this afternoon was more than nice, it was necessary, and healing, and freeing.
But the Lord thundered with a loud thunder upon the Philistines that day, and so confused them that they were overcome before Israel. 11 And the men of Israel went out of Mizpah and pursued the Philistines, and drove them back as far as below Beth Car. 12 Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen, and called its name Ebenezer,<sup class="footnote" value="[c]”>[c] saying, “Thus far the Lord has helped us.”
13 So the Philistines were subdued, and they did not come anymore into the territory of Israel. And the hand of the Lord was against the Philistines all the days of Samuel. 14 Then the cities which the Philistines had taken from Israel were restored to Israel, from Ekron to Gath; and Israel recovered its territory from the hands of the Philistines. Also there was peace between Israel and the Amorites.
Thank you God for your Thundering power! Thank you for Your undeserved forgiveness! And thank You for subduing my enemies.
Listen to this song by Plumb, inspired by her son. It’s life changing. “I don’t deserve you”