SERMON: WEAK WEARY AND WORN BUT NOT WASHED UP
10:30 Worship Service | Sunday, August 9, 2020
2nd Samuel 3:39
And I am this day weak, though anointed king; and these men the sons of Zeruiah be too hard for me: the Lord shall reward the doer of evil according to his wickedness.
For ten years David was in exile with a price on his head; he was fleeing from the wrath of King Saul who was envious of him. These were turbulent, complex, and uncertain times for God’s people. Saul and Israel were fighting against the Philistines and David, although he was in exile, was fighting against the Amalekites. Saul and three of his sons were killed in one of the battles against the Philistines. One of the sons killed was Jonathan, David’s best friend. David now is in mourning for Saul and especially for Jonathan. For the first time in ten years, David and his men are no longer fugitives, yet he still mourns for Saul and Jonathan. Think about this: Your best friend’s father had tried to kill you and now they both are dead. Things got better and then they got worse. The leaders of Judah anointed David and confirmed him as king. This was the second time David had been anointed king because Samuel performed it first. David’s first anointing is recorded in 1st Samuel 16:13. Abner, the captain of Saul’s army, made Saul’s only surviving son, Ish-Bosheth, the king. Of course this precipitated a civil war. Now they had two opposing kings. The plot thickens even more. Abner, after making Ish-Bosheth the king, got mad with him and defected to David’s camp. It was over a woman. David thought he and Abner could somehow broker peace with Ish-Bosheth because Abner had great diplomatic and negotiating skills. Before David and Abner could develop a strategic plan for peace, David’s nephews (the sons of his sister, Zeruiah) assassinated Abner. This murder was motivated by a combination of revenge and distrust. All of these events took their toll on David’s spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical well-being. He was totally discombobulated. The beauty of this whole story is that David realized he was weak. He was still the legitimate king, but he knew he was weak. Let’s face it; there are many Christians who are weak, weary, and worn. Life can just beat you down. Many caregivers feel as if they are at the breaking point. Many parents are in a quandary about sending their children to in-person school. We can learn much from his response in our text. Let me use this Scripture to give a few points on how we can handle the weak periods of our lives and minimize the negative effects.
1. Provide Accurate, Objective Self-Evaluation
(David Knew He Had Become Weak)
(“This Day” –Every Day Is Not the Same)
2. Paint a Plimsoll Line On Your Life And Honor It
(Know When the Load Is Getting Too Heavy)
3. Work from Your Rest More Than Resting From Your Work
(Sometimes It Is Easier Said Than Done)
(Think Like Athletes-They “Rest Up” Before a Big Game)
(Performing Artists “Rest Up” Before a Big Concert)
4. Delegate to the Right People-Long-Term and Short-Term
(Jesus Delegated-That’s Why He Picked 12 Apostles)
(It’s Okay to Ask for Help-It Is Not a Sign of Weakness)
(You Will Get Weak Quicker If You Don’t Ask For Help)
(See Acts 16:9)
5. Imitate the Eagle and Let God Renew Your Strength
(And the Wise Messenger-Isaiah 40:31)
In these challenging times we may have to go “Old School” and sing some Doris Akers and some Thomas Dorsey.
“I Am Weak And I Need Thy Strength And Power To Help Me Over My Weakest Hour. Help Me Through The Darkness Thy Face To See, Lead Me, Oh Lord, Lead Me.”
“Precious Lord, Take My Hand, Lead Me On, Help Me Stand; I Am Tired, I Am Weak, I Am Worn; Through The Storm, Through The Night, Lead Me On To The Light, Take My Hand, Precious Lord, Lead Me Home.”
Let us not forget the words of Jesus, Our Savior, recorded in Matthew 11:28: “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Give God Glory! Give God All The Glory!
1. The Hebrew word for “weak” is “rak.” It can also be translated as faint, tired, or gentle. If David was gentle, it was because he was too tired and depressed to make any executive decisions. He did not sentence the murderers on that day. This is for the nerds: The linguistic/technical term for a word with more than one meaning is “polysemy.”
2. The images Isaiah gives in 40:31 are beautiful. The first is the molting of an eagle. When an eagle’s feathers have become tattered, worn, and torn the eagle instinctively flies to a cave or crater high in the mountains. This is after the eagle has feasted on several gluttonous meals. While in this secluded place, the bird’s body chemistry changes and all of its feathers dislodge. Now the eagle looks like a plucked chicken. As the bird waits, new feathers began to appear. In a few weeks the bird has a new coat of feathers. It can now fly higher and faster than before. The second image is of a messenger who ran in haste to deliver important information for kings and other dignitaries. He had to be “rested up” to be prepared to fulfill his duties in an expeditious manner. It was difficult to just sit and wait for the next assignment. However, if he was not well rested, he would not do a good job. On very long distances the messenger would walk rather than run. The idea of the two images is that God will renew, revive, and refresh us if we patiently trust Him.
Copyright (c) 2020 by James C. Ward
All rights reserved