How to have joy in hard times
From 1 Samuel: A 6-Week Devotional
Think back to some of the most stressful or scary moments in your life. How did you react? If you’re like most people, praising God probably wasn’t the first thing on your mind. But, David had a different idea: In the middle of his troubles, his focus was on the Almighty.
In 1 Samuel 21, David was on the run without food, weapons or any sort of provision. Later, in fleeing from King Saul, his decision to defect to Achish, king of Gath, raises suspicions and David’s fears. David turned to carving the walls and drooling to convince the king he was insane. Yet God provided every step of the way, from giving David and his men the consecrated bread to sparing his life from the suspicious king.
Focusing on God and His promises will help us have joy in the middle of scary situations.
Out of this adversity David wrote Psalm 34, a beautiful song of praise that glorified God, and focused on God’s promises, in the middle of David’s troubles. The opening verse says it all: “I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips” (Psalm 34:1).
We all face troubles sooner or later, but if you’re a follower of Jesus you can know that God will carry you through them. In Psalm 34:8, David declares, “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.”
Worry, doubt and fear can multiply our troubles exponentially. When we praise God through the tough times, however, we focus on the One who can solve our problems in the best way, in His time.
David wasn’t different from any Jesus follower today; in fact, we have the Holy Spirit living in us to help. And, focusing on God and His promises—like David did—will help us have joy in the middle of scary situations.
- Think back to when God helped you through difficulties. How did God show His provision and care through those situations?
- What is one way you can keep your focus on God in the midst of difficult times?
- Do you have a relationship with Jesus, who promises to help you through difficulties? If not, you can start one today.