Sunday, October 11, 2015

Balm of Gilead

It was a familiar place of pain. He has scars from other scrapes. But this had to be especially painful. He’s on the run once again as a fugitive. This time from his own son, Absolom who took the throne from him.

While David ran for his life, he ran into Shemei who was from Saul’s family. David’s old nemesis. He rubbed salt in the raw wound, cursing him, and adding insult to injury threw stones and dirt. David had every right to strike back at this man, and was encouraged to do so, yet he spared his life and rode on. 

Yet David never forgot what Shemei did. While on his deathbed, he warns his son Solomon about Shemei. 

I wouldn’t forget either. While I have to forgive like Jesus forgave me, I certainly wouldn’t share a cup of coffee with them. I wouldn’t get all chummy. 

Scripture says that David was exhausted. Who wouldn’t be after that assault? He was already low in spirit and to have someone pile on like that would be more than I could take. 

This is just like our enemy the devil. His tactics aren’t much different. When we give in to temptation, fail miserably, or feeling vulnerable, it’s painful enough isn’t it? But then he inflicts curses, condemnations, throws dirt and stones. He piles on. 

But watch what happens with David:

Barzillai from Gilead meets David and opens his arms and welcomes him. Feeds him, provides supplies for the journey and encourages him. This had to refresh and uplift David so much. Because of Barzillai, he was able to continue on. 

Jeremiah 8:22 asks, “Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then is there no healing for the wound of my people?”

After this life and our enemy has buffeted our souls, we are left weary and downtrodden. You and I have a Balm of Gilead. Jesus; Who is acquainted with our weakness and felt our pain. 

He is “the God of all comfort”, “He comforts all who mourn”, “He comforts us in all our troubles.” 

Beloved are you hurting and broken at this very moment? Are you weary and disheartened? Oh, there is a Balm for your wounds. A Balm to soothe your pain. To heal and restore you. He speaks gracious and kinds words to your battered spirit:

“I have upheld you since you were conceived, and carried you since your birth. Even to your old age and gray hairs, I am He. I am He who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you. I will sustain you and I will rescue you.” Isaiah 46:3-4

Beloved, I pray that you feel His sweet presence and hear those gracious words. 

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