Strengthen Yourself

King David knew what it was to experience anguish. In 1 Samuel 30 things are going horribly wrong, all their loved ones and belongings have been taken. Times were pretty desperate.

Two things I thought when I observed this scenario. Firstly – it’s alright to wail and weep to the point of exhaustion. Yet it doesn’t mean we stay there. In verse 6 we see a shift for David. It tells us that he even though he was distressed that he ‘strengthened himself in the Lord his God’.

Second thought – I have to know how to strengthen myself in the Lord our God. It’s my responsibility to stay strong in the Lord.

For me that means being aware, at all times, of who He is. It means positioning myself to hear the whispers from God. To learn to catch those words that bring light in to those darkest of moments.

How do you strengthen yourself?

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Hold On…The Moment Will Come [Day 5]

When I read the story of David, anointed as King but not yet King, I marvel at his ability to continue to do the right thing, despite everything that was going on around him. He displays the opposite characteristics to those that Saul demonstrated.

Saul grew impatient.
Saul went with the crowd.
Saul was easily persuaded.
That’s why Saul missed out on God’s best for his life.

On the other hand, David was presented with ample opportunity to ‘deal with Saul’, even encouraged by his men to do so, dressing it up as something provided by the Lord. David holds on to his integrity, twice and proves that those who can do this, will not miss out on what God has prepared for them. It keeps you locked on to your destiny.

I am excited about what God is getting ready to do, in my life and in the life of Xcel Church. I truly believe that Xcel Darlington is ready to explode with growth, provided that we do it Gods way. As I believe for change over these 90 days, it would be easy to get frustrated when things don’t take the shape I think they should. Staying faithful is never easy, God never said it would be.

Tell us…
What do you when God has not come through yet?
Have you ever felt like you missed out because you didn’t wait for God?
Do you struggle sometimes with God’s timing on stuff?

I’ve been here before and will probably come this way again.


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Change Your View…Day 4

Believing God for change. Learning that I must wait for God.

Reading through 1 Samuel. Chapter 13: 7-12 really jumped out at me today. I saw something that I had never noticed before. Saul demonstrated an inability to wait. This character flaw cost him his kingship. Saul has waited 7 days, the time set by Samuel but the people are getting restless so he decides to make the offering himself.

When confronted by Samuel his words are amazing….
I SAW that the men were scattering…
I THOUGHT the enemy would come and attack
I FELT compelled to act

How many times when I have been waiting on God, holding out for God, believing God for change, did I not just keep waiting but act on my own initiative?

It might SEEM okay to me but is it what God wants?
I might THINK it will be okay but is it what God really wants?
I might FEEL that I had no option but is that really true?

In these 90 days of focused prayer and times of fasting I must be determined to just keep waiting. If I want to see God change things then I must not succomb to the urge to change things myself. After all as Samuel said later in 1 Samuel 15..to obey is better than sacrifice. Patience. Faith. Trust. Easy to say not so easy to hold on to.

Ever experienced this?
Ever acted on your own compulsion instead of waiting for God?

don’t grow numb…Day 3

Choosing to do something is easy. The daily discipline of that choice is another matter altogether.

Reading 1 Samuel earlier to day I wondered how had Eli the priest lost his ability to discern peoples actions correctly or to even recognise when God speaking. How do you get to the place where you think someone who is pouring out their heart is actually drunk? Strange to think that it took 3 attempts before Eli suggested to Samuel that it was the Lord who was calling him and how he should respond.

He had grown numb to the presence of the Lord.
He had become comfortable in his role as priest.
He demonstrated a considerable level of immaturity
when it came to the way God does things and what he requires.

Forty years of doing the same thing, holding responsibility, perhaps he thought everything was okay really. The daily discipline of doing the right things, consistently, is never easy but the rewards are incedible.

In the midst of our series Team Church for Xcel Darlington. This is the stuff that keeps you on team. World-class footballers don’t get there by chance. They may possess some natural gifting but they train hard to be able to play hard. Don’t train, don’t play. They lose their match fitness. They are not ready! Same can be true for Christians.

Eli forgot what it took to stay in the game. His lazy, irresponsible attitude cost him. My prayer today is that I never grow numb to what the Lord is doing. In my life, in Xcel Church, in Xcel Darlington. I will do all I can to stay in the right place with God and keep myself ‘match ready’.

What are doing to make sure you don’t grow numb to what God wants to do with your life?
What are sticking at over the next 90 days to see change in your world?