“And David longed, and said, Oh that one would give me drink of the water of the well of Bethlehem, that is at the gate! And the three brake through the host of the Philistines, and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem, that was by the gate, and took it, and brought it to David: but David would not drink of it, but poured it out to the LORD,” I Chronicles 11:17-18.
In the lower part of the farm where I grew up there was a spring. Cool clear crystal water flowed from it all year long. If you have never tasted water from a spring, then you have never really had a truly cold drink. Years have gone by, but when I think of that spring, I can almost taste the water from it. David must have been thirsty when he spoke his thoughts aloud. The New Living Translation, puts it this way: David remarked longingly to his men, “Oh, how I would love some of that good water from the well by the gate in Bethlehem.”
These three mighty men were devoted to David, his simplest wish was their command. They slipped away, risking their lives, and dipped water from the well of Bethlehem and brought it to David. He was overwhelmed by what they had done and instead of drinking the water, he poured it out on the ground. He prayed, “Lord, it would be wrong for me to drink this water, it is the blood of these men who risked their lives.” He honoured them for their courage and bravery in the presence of all, thus assuring his men that He considered them all precious in his sight and in the sight of God.
David was in a position of leadership, and this episode showed the respect and admiration that his men had for him. God has placed pastors and leaders over each one of us. He has given them wisdom and ability to mentor and direct us. I am sure that none of them would ask us to do something dangerous, but they do expect us to respect them and be willing to listen and submit to their teachings.
The most important thing we can do for our leaders is pray for them. They carry loads that we cannot even imagine. We may never know what they are going through, but the Lord can direct us in prayer for the situation. Every day, we need to take them and their family to the Lord, asking that He will strengthen them in body, soul, mind, and spirit. Knowing that we are praying, will be like a cup of cold water to them.
Have you prayed for your pastor and other leaders today?
Devotion by Anne Johnston