Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: The Pen is Mightier than the Sword (04/08/10)
TITLE: The Hope of My Soul
By Kathleen Tollifson
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“David, this is your chance.” Liam’s urgent whisper could be heard by the men hidden in the dark recesses of the cave. “The Lord has delivered Saul into our hands, just as we prayed.”
David nodded his agreement. Sword in hand, he crept towards the slumbering giant. To Liam’s surprise, David did not kill the man who lay sleeping. Instead he deftly sliced off a corner of his royal robe. David waved the piece of fabric triumphantly at Liam, and the two men ran silently into the bowels of the cave, joining the others.
“What were you thinking of David?” Liam was furious that David had not taken his advantage. “You could have killed him easier than slashing his robe.”
“I am not sure,” David stammered in response. “I felt a terrible fear from the Lord,” he explained to the men, who were angry that he had not killed Saul. Saul had sworn a vengeance against David, and had bitterly pursued David and his men for many months. “Let it be said that I never raised my hand against the Lord’s anointed one.” With that, David ordered that no one would harm Saul. The men were disgruntled and there was an ominous murmuring. Soon Saul awoke, and went his way undisturbed.
David followed Saul from the cave. “My lord!” he cried out. Saul swung around to see David waving the piece of robe. “Look, this day the Lord delivered you into my hands,” David shouted. “Rather than put you to death, I took this piece of your robe. I have done you no wrong, although you have sworn to take my life.”
“Let the Lord judge this day, between you and me,” David declared. “I pray that the Lord will support my cause, and keep me from falling into your hands.”
“Is that you David?” Saul was overcome with remorse. “Surely the Lord will reward you for the mercy you have shown to me today.” Heavy with sorrow, he said “The Lord will make you King, and Israel will be strong under your leadership. I pray that you will show mercy to my family.”
Saul returned peacefully to his home and David and his men went to their place of safety in the pasture lands of Paran. There David poured out his heart to the Lord in these verses: “Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me; for the hope of my soul is in you: I will keep myself safely under the shade of your wings, till these troubles are past. I will send up my cry to the Most High God; to God who does all things for me. He will send from heaven, and take me from the power of him whose desire is for my destruction. God will send out his mercy and his good faith.” (Ps 57:1-3)
The story of Saul’s jealous vengeance against David, who would be Israel’s greatest King, still speaks over thousands of years. When he faced a ruthless and powerful foe, David laid down his sword. His humble trust in God as his deliverer has comforted millions since that day. David, the courageous warrior/psalmist still leads God’s people into victory over all of their enemies.
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