In I Samuel 30 we find a little-known episode, but one of the greatest crises David ever faced. It was before he ever became king, and could have derailed everything. While he and his men were off on a mission, the Amalekites made a raid on David’s camp and captured all of their families. Verse 6 says: “Moreover David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him, for all the people were embittered, each one because of his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.” Notice what David did in this crisis:
— He “STRENGTHENED himself.” He was weak. Verse 4 says that he was just like all the other people with him, who “lifted their voices and wept until there was no strength in them to weep.” He had no strength on his own. Moreover, :6 says he “was greatly distressed” by the grumblings of his people. And yet, he “strengthened himself” by seeking God. As Isaiah 40:31 says, “those who wait on the LORD will renew their strength.” Because he strengthened himself in God, David was able to rally himself and his men to go and recover their families and their possessions.
— Notice also that it says that he “strengthened HIMSELF” — there is personal effort involved. David did not just sit there and hope that things turned around. He took personal action to strengthen himself in God. And doubtless he did it the way that we all must: turn to Him in prayer; seek Him in His word; strengthen yourself in your God. But no one else can do this for you; you must do it for yourself. “Put on the full armor of God”, Ephesians 6 commands us. No one else can put that armor on you for you; you must do it for yourself. Strengthen yourself in your God!
— “in the LORD his God.” This is important. David not gain strength from his own inner resources, or from other people. He gained strength from God. The word “LORD”, in all caps here, indicates that in Hebrew this is the personal name “Yahweh”, as opposed to other gods. David did not strengthen himself through the gods of Baal or Molech or any of the other nations’ gods; he found strength in THIS particular God, Yahweh, the God of the Bible, the God of Israel.
And we can too! David is a great example here of just what we should do in our most trying hours: strengthen ourselves in our God. It could be written of David that Yahweh was “HIS God.” If the LORD is YOUR God, through Jesus Christ, then you have the same resources available to you in your hour of need that David did. Follow his example, and in your crisis, strengthen yourself in your God!