4. Expect God to Grow You Amidst Threats
Perhaps no other difficult person in his life helped David grow more than Saul. On multiple occasions and for several years, Saul tried to kill David because he was jealous of his success.
God’s hand was on David and no longer on Saul, and that made Saul extremely angry and irrational, with David getting the brunt of that anger. Instead of trying to get revenge or retaliating against Saul, David continued to honor Saul as king, and God kept blessing and growing him.
Saul hurled spears multiple times at David while he was ministering to him. David escaped, and continued to come back and serve Saul. These decisions, in dealing with a difficult Saul, grew David’s character and servitude.
Saul sent David into multiple battles, with the hopes that David would get killed by an enemy, but the experience only made David a stronger warrior.
Saul’s death-wish for David caused David to go into hiding, but this desolate season strengthened his intimacy with God (as evidenced by the many of the Psalms he wrote during this time).
While in hiding, many outcasts joined David: men who were in trouble, in debt, and many who were just discontented (1 Samuel 22:2). As this group (comprised mostly of complaining criminals) gathered for guidance, David grew in his leadership ability.
Through all the struggles that David faced as a result of Saul, David became more prepared to be the kind of God-honoring king that Israel needed.
While you may not have people in your life that are trying to kill you like David did, you can still grow and get better through the struggles that difficult people in your life can cause. You too can grow in character, strength, intimacy with God, and leadership like David did when you continue to press on and obey God in the midst of being treated unjustly.
Difficult people in your life cannot be avoided, but God will use them for your good if you submit to His leading and choose to take the high road. Sometimes you may need to set boundaries with people who are being abusive. After all, David didn’t stay and let Saul kill him. But if in those situations you can still choose forgiveness and a soft heart, you will open yourself up to the good that God wants to do in you as a result of that difficult person in your life.
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Cortni Marrazzo lives in Spokane, WA with her husband Jason and their two elementary-age sons, one of which has special needs. She has a Degree in Biblical Discipleship and has a passion for the local church and encouraging and inspiring people toward God’s Word. You can contact her at Cortni.Marrazzo@gmail.com or follow her Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/CortniMarrazzo)