Stop and thank God for being present with you today. Ask for God’s guidance as you hear God’s voice through scripture and the writer.
1 Chronicles 12:16-22 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
Some Benjaminites and Judahites came to the stronghold to David. David went out to meet them and said to them, “If you have come to me in friendship, to help me, then my heart will be knit to you; but if you have come to betray me to my adversaries, though my hands have done no wrong, then may the God of our ancestors see and give judgment.” Then the spirit came upon Amasai, chief of the Thirty, and he said,
“We are yours, O David;
and with you, O son of Jesse!
Peace, peace to you,
and peace to the one who helps you!
For your God is the one who helps you.”
Then David received them, and made them officers of his troops.
Some of the Manassites deserted to David when he came with the Philistines for the battle against Saul. (Yet he did not help them, for the rulers of the Philistines took counsel and sent him away, saying, “He will desert to his master Saul at the cost of our heads.”) As he went to Ziklag these Manassites deserted to him: Adnah, Jozabad, Jediael, Michael, Jozabad, Elihu, and Zillethai, chiefs of the thousands in Manasseh. They helped David against the band of raiders, for they were all warriors and commanders in the army. Indeed from day to day people kept coming to David to help him, until there was a great army, like an army of God.
Many of us are uncomfortable meeting new people. Will they like us? Will they help us? Might they even become a friend? It’s been said that “a stranger is a friend you just haven’t yet met.” There might be some truth to that, but we might still feel uneasy. David found himself with similar concerns. The prophet Samuel had identified David as the king who would replace King Saul (1 Samuel 10:13). Yet King Saul intended to kill David. Soon, David finds himself in hiding among foreigners. Imagine: King David scared of anyone who approached, not certain if they were friendly or not.
However, Amasai indicates “We are yours, O David; and with you, O son of Jesse!” (1 Chronicles 12: 18). David then discovers an increasing number of supporters, “like an army of God.” (1 Chronicles 12:22). Know that God brings people into our lives to support us, to encourage us, and to befriend us – all in perfect timing. But, we should also pay attention when the Holy Spirit comes upon us (1 Chronicles 12: 18), to introduce us into other people’s lives. You might be the very person that God intends to bring support to a stranger – whether a small word of encouragement or a random act of kindness. That support will then be used by God to fulfill His perfect plan.
Faithful God, you bring people into our lives for a reason. We thank you for our friends and those who encourage us. May we also be mindful of how you would use us in the lives of others. May we be attentive and respond to your leading us in ways we might show support, kindness, and friendship to others – even to others we may not yet know. Amen.
Go with God!