Then there went certain, and told David how the men were served. And he sent to meet them: for the men were greatly ashamed. And the king said, Tarry at Jericho until your beards be grown, and then return. ~1 Chronicles 19:5
Have you ever been a victim of some type of abuse, attack, or shameful treatment that left you in a state of emotional shambles? By this, I am referring to something that made you feel like withdrawing from all contact with people, the consideration of relocating, and disenchantment with people as a whole? If you have ever gone through something like this, this morning’s devotion will be an encouragement to you. This morning, we will see that in spite of an embarrassing or shameful experience, you can go recover and go forward by God’s grace.
We see the embarrassing WRONGDOING.
David sent several favored, trusted, and venerable representatives to Hanun, king of Ammon, to console and comfort him at the time of the passing of his father. David’s intentions were pure and motivated with a desire to be a blessing to the son of a man who was a friend to David. Hanun was advised by his foolish counselors that David had ulterior motives, and should not be trusted. The revolting young king greeted the respectful representatives with outrageous and abominable treatment. They manhandled these representatives by shaving their beards, mutilating their royal garments, and shamefully exposing their bodies from the hips down. These men were publicly humiliated and sent to travel back home in shameful disrespect. Can you imagine if this were you, and there was nothing you could do to defend yourself? Being shamed has a very demoralizing effect on a person. You can go from being shamed, to shock, to sorrow, to shunning everyone in your life. These men felt like their lives were ruined.
We see the encouraging WISDOM.
We are told that “Certain, told David how the men were served.” This was very unsettling for David, and immediately he felt concern for his servants and how demoralized they must have felt. He sent word back and wisely told them, “Tarry at Jericho until your beards be grown, and then return.” This is God’s encouragement to wait things out, have faith in God’s grace in your life, and then come back. Difficult and even shameful experiences are dealt with the same way as these men were advised. Joseph was slandered by Potiphar’s wife and sent to prison. Yet, he tarried where God placed him, and came out of that terrible place as a better man who was prepared to assume a responsibility that would save the world. Tarry at Jericho and let God renew your wounded spirit. Tarry at Jericho and let your inner man be renewed. Don’t run away and try to find refuge where you could fall into sin. Go to the Lord as your refuge and strength, as a very present help in time of sorrow.
We see the efficacious WORKING.
“Tarry at Jericho until your beards be grown.” David was encouraging these men that their beards would grow back! In every disaster, you can start over again! With every setback, you can rebuild! After every sickness or health setback, you can get back your strength! The message here is that as you wait on the Lord, let the misfortune be a spiritual growth opportunity. In every unfortunate situation in life, wait on God; lean not on your own understanding; rely on his grace to strengthen and sustain you; as your morale and strength start to return, return to being effective for God. David’s servants were allowed the necessary time to let their beards grow back, and then they were encouraged to return to their place of service.
Don’t let a bad experience shut you down and leave you as if there is no future. “Tarry at Jericho until your beard be grown, then return.”
Have a resilient God Morning!