“Blessed are those whose strength is in you…As they go through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs; They go from strength to strength.” -Psalm 84:5-7 (ESV)

If ever there was a time to keep your eyes fixed upon the Lord – it is now! Our world has become unpredictable and uncertain. We have seen many churches close down during the COVID-19 pandemic, a war broke out in Eastern Europe, and the cost of gas dramatically increased in the United States and other countries. In addition to world events, I’m sure many of us also face significant challenges and experience dry times in our personal lives.  

The question is: How do we handle and navigate problems when they are right in front of our faces? The best example we can learn from is King David. He was a man who faced many trials and experienced many rejections from his enemy and even from his own family. After being rejected by his enemy (1 Samuel 29), David and his men had no choice but to return to Ziklag. Upon their return, they discovered that their city had been burned down, and they had lost all their possessions; most devastatingly, their wives and children were missing. This was a terrible day for all of them, especially David. His soldiers were so upset over what happened that they blamed David and threatened to kill him (1 Samuel 30:1-6).

David was feeling greatly distressed because of this. I’m sure you would feel the same. However, David responded like a true hero; he didn’t run away or shrink back. The Bible tells us that “David strengthened himself in the Lord his God” (1 Samuel 30:6). This wise decision brought a breakthrough, and he was empowered by God with unusual strength and given a strategy to regain their losses, saving his life from six hundred angry men. David did not let pressure, blame, or the voices of criticism distract him from the purpose of his life. He didn’t even get offended by his men’s behavior. Instead, David moved beyond the typical response by motivating his men and inspiring them to run after their enemy so they could take back what belonged to them. He led these men into victory again and turned what appeared to be a hopeless situation around. What a great man of God David was! 

Strengthening ourselves in the Lord is a necessary skill we must develop for our time on this earth. If we want to run our race well and fulfill our destiny, we must run with God, not man. We need to find encouragement from God so that when we go through the valley of Baca, the time of weeping, the time of pain or crisis, we can still find a way to come out. God promises us over and over that He will make us strong, protect us with His arm, and give us victories (Isaiah 41:10). This means that God has equipped us for success, and we can’t fail. Our only responsibility is to strengthen our inner man by running to God and letting Him minister to us and give us divine solutions in our areas of need and weakness. We can’t win the battle by our might, nor our power, but only by His Spirit.

Anh Powers