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How do you see life? Seeing God Regardless of Circumstance

There is a story about David before he becomes king. Saul had been chasing him around for years, until finally David is driven from his heritage to the land of the Philistines, the enemies of the Hebrews. Somehow, even though David was a mighty warrior for Saul, he finds favor in the eyes of Achish, one of the princes of Philistia, who gives David and his followers a city to dwell in by the name of Ziklag.

While abiding in the city, David continues to raid and fight against the enemies of the Hebrews, all the while making Achish believe that he was fighting against the Hebrews. Somehow, his subterfuge is not discovered. When Philistia decides to make war on the Hebrew nation and sends David and his men back to his city of Ziklag, they find the city ransacked and in flames. The city had been raided by a marauding band of Amalekites and somehow not a single person perished. They were only taken as well as the stuff.

How King David Sees Life

As David and his men begin to search for the war party, they must leave some men behind, because they are too exhausted. Somehow, David happens upon a discarded human being, a servant of one of the princes of Amalek. David shows kindness to the servant and, in return, is led to the band of thieves. Somehow, David and his 400 remaining men defeat enough of the Amalekites to make the last 400 flee away on camels. Somehow, not a soul of all that belonged to David and his camp is lost. Somehow, even down to the smallest possession was recovered.

The men who took part in the rescue want to keep all the stuff and only give back the people. David will have none of this and not only returns an equal share to each of the 400 who rescued the people from the Amalekites and the 200 that remained behind, but also sets aside provision for all those back in his homeland, who made a safe place for David and his men while they were on the run.

Seeing God Regardless of Your Circumstance

What kind of person can always see God regardless of the circumstances? King Saul is bathing in all the blessing of the Lord, yet he cannot find God anywhere and ends up chasing away the only one who brought him any comfort. The 400 men of David’s camp, sharing in the impoverished conditions that David experienced, can only see opportunities to better themselves through their own efforts. David, like these men, has been constantly on the run. He has been accused wrongfully, rewarded evil for his loyalty and driven from his heritage. Yet somehow, he is still able to be the image the Almighty created him to be and find a place in his heart for compassion and generosity.

David’s ancestor Jacob, when on the run from Esau, came to Bethel and proclaimed, “Surely God is in this place, and I did not know it.” David does not seem to be unaware of God’s presence, regardless of the place he finds himself.

Three Types of People: How They See Life

This story of David illustrates three types of people. Saul, who is bathed in God’s blessings but cannot seem to see God or encounter His glory. The 400 men of David, who cannot see God’s provision and only seek to make their own lives better. David, who made some very tough decisions under exceedingly difficult circumstances, yet always seems to have found an opportunity to follow in the likeness of the Creator, even though circumstances give him no encouragement to do so.

When you read this, did you notice the number of “somehow(s)” in the text. If you look closely, there are some that are hidden in suggestion. It's funny how those “somehow(s)” in our lives are so easily overlooked. I think that one of the things that made David so great was that these “somehow(s)” did not seem to escape his notice, not even the hidden ones. What does the story of David suggest on how we can look at the world? How would you use this story to change your life to see differently… to be different? What do you see in the image the Creator had in mind for you? David will eventually pen “yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil”. Taking that walk without fear is possible, but it is very difficult (maybe impossible), if you miss the “somehow(s).”