Daily Devotional: Day 40
“And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock: And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him” (1 Samuel 17:34-35, KJV).
Whatever assignment is entrusted to you, be sure to do it well, whether someone is watching or not. Today’s Scripture focuses on David as he prepared to take on Goliath. King Saul tried in vain to discourage David from fighting the Philistine. Today’s Bible verse tells us about part of David’s response to the King. Notice that David speaks of his experience in protecting his father’s sheep from the lion and the bear. Jesse, his father, assigned David to the tending of the sheep. That must have kept him away from the comfort of the home for considerable amount of time during the day. Being out with the flock also meant that David’s life as a shepherd was constantly at risk.
The fact that David talks about lion and bear means that not only were the sheep’s life at risk, but his own life, too. Let’s note also that in those times, keeping livestock was an important source of the family’s sustenance. This means the success of the family, at least in part, depended on David’s diligence in keeping the flock safe and sound. David goes on to say that when a lion or a bear took one of the lambs, he pursued it and delivered it out of the predator’s mouth; and if the lion or bear attacked him, he slew it without hesitation.
The above story has implications for all children of the Father. You see, God, being a good Father, has great plans to grow you into maturity. But maturity takes time, discipline, consistency and faithfully executing tasks assigned to you. People often admire David for his slaying of Goliath but they don’t emphasize enough the fact that David was first a Lion and Bear Slayer, before he became a Giant Slayer. This means King Saul was mistaken when he assumed that David had no experience in fighting. God had been training David, preparing him for the big stage. After overcoming the threat of lions and bears, David was ready for Goliath, and when the latter showed up, he was no match for David.
The lesson here is this: Whatever you do, do it well. Don’t take it lightly when any task is assigned to you, whether at school, at the workplace, at home, or at church. Whatever challenge you encounter, look for ways to overcome it, instead of running from it. Remember that each time you embrace a challenge and overcome it, you become stronger and better than before. The first time David was attacked by a lion, he could have gone home and decided never to shepherd the flock again. But he didn’t. He embraced the challenge of protecting the flock and accomplishing the task assigned to him. Little did he know that one day, he would be leading Israel into battle. The easy way isn’t always the best way. Learn from David.
Dear Father, Jesus did not run from his assignment. Grant me the boldness to face adversity and the faith to overcome it. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.
For further study: Hebrews 12:1-13