Daily Devotional

David: Gathered Together for the Lord

by Simon Whitton

1 David left Gath and escaped to the cave of Adullam. When his brothers and his father's household heard about it, they went down to him there.
2 All those who were in distress or in debt or discontented gathered around him, and he became their leader. About four hundred men were with him.

1 Samuel 22:1-2 (NIV)

King Saul was trying to kill David, so he fled the king's service and became a fugitive. I doubt this was the way that David imagined things were going to turn out for him. But these difficult circumstances were part of God's plan.

Then the Lord did something else that David couldn't have expected: 'All those who were in distress or in debt or discontented gathered around him, and he became their leader. About four hundred men were with him.'

God rarely uses the people that we would expect. He chooses those rejected by others, those in trouble, people who are far from perfect. In this case He brought together an assortment of 'drop outs', people who had failed or were not getting along in normal society. These were men who could have easily become a roving band of thieves; but the Lord saw their hearts and He mercifully drew them together under Godly leadership, for His purposes.

These men appear to have been drawn to David, perhaps they saw someone they could relate to, someone rejected and in trouble, a kindred spirit; someone who would not judge them, but would accept them for who they were.

The Lord would use this wandering band of outlaws to form the core of a new movement in His kingdom. To usher in a new dynasty that would last through the ages. But first they were chased from stronghold to stronghold, involved in battles here and there, getting help wherever they could. Despite the difficulties, the Lord was with them, blessing those who helped them, and cursing those who didn't.

We have also been chosen by God. There may be people who don't fully accept you, perhaps you even feel like an outcast, but God accepts you just as you are. It's alright if you're in distress or in debt or discontented; maybe you've made some serious mistakes and are in trouble; you may even be running from something in your past. None of this disqualifies you from God's acceptance.

God wants to use you for His purposes, to advance His kingdom. You don't have to conform to some ideal notion of what a Christian should be before you can be useful. You don't have to be perfect, and neither do the conditions of your life.

Spend some time praying and thank God that He has chosen you just as you are, and He has a place and a purpose for you in His kingdom. Ask the Lord to put you together with others, to place you under Godly leadership, and that He will use you mightily for the advancement of His kingdom.

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