When I read these scriptures, there are issues then that still happen today, and I mourn.
I mourn Saul who was given title and responsibility, but whose heart was choked by jealousy, insecurity, anger, pride. God, give me kingdom vision to elevate others and work in unison. I delight in your work, and I value and encourage others. Guard my heart against comparison and resentment.
4 The next morning Jonathan spoke with his father about David, saying many good things about him. “The king must not sin against his servant David,” Jonathan said. “He’s never done anything to harm you. He has always helped you in any way he could. 5 Have you forgotten about the time he risked his life to kill the Philistine giant and how the Lord brought a great victory to all Israel as a result? You were certainly happy about it then. Why should you murder an innocent man like David? There is no reason for it at all!” (1 Samuel 19:4-5, NLT)
I mourn David who was serving, talented, strong, chosen–and hated for it all. God, an enemy whispers, guilts, shames me to be ineffective, small, afraid. Help me live life freely for your glory, to be who you’ve called me to be, even when faced by a foe who wants to shut me up and take me down.
1 O Lord, oppose those who oppose me.
Fight those who fight against me.
2 Put on your armor, and take up your shield.
Prepare for battle, and come to my aid.
3 Lift up your spear and javelin
against those who pursue me.
Let me hear you say,
“I will give you victory!”
4 Bring shame and disgrace on those trying to kill me;
turn them back and humiliate those who want to harm me.
5 Blow them away like chaff in the wind—
a wind sent by the angel of the Lord.
6 Make their path dark and slippery,
with the angel of the Lord pursuing them.
7 I did them no wrong, but they laid a trap for me.
I did them no wrong, but they dug a pit to catch me.
8 So let sudden ruin come upon them!
Let them be caught in the trap they set for me!
Let them be destroyed in the pit they dug for me. (Psalm 35:1-8, NLT)
I mourn the before-and-after contrast in Lamentations. When the life one knows is stripped away–who do we become when pressures weight? Lord, when the life I knew is suddenly changed, help me to mature and grow in the season. Challenges show me who I am at heart, and who you are always. May I always seek you.
7 Our princes once glowed with health—
brighter than snow, whiter than milk.
Their faces were as ruddy as rubies,
their appearance like fine jewels.
8 But now their faces are blacker than soot.
No one recognizes them in the streets.
Their skin sticks to their bones;
it is as dry and hard as wood. (Lamentations 4:7-8, NLT)
I mourn the splintering of community. Oh, Lord, help me to see beyond the temporary to keep my eyes on the eternal. I bring the narrative to you–show me what is true and right. Divisions are diversions on the path–help me to stay the course, eyes on you.
10 I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose. 11 For some members of Chloe’s household have told me about your quarrels, my dear brothers and sisters. (1 Corinthians 1:10-11, NLT)