ODJ: shaken back to life

March 26, 2015 

READ: Judges 15:5-14 

Don’t you realise the Philistines rule over us? (v.11).

One time when I was high up a mountain in Norway, God chose to rescue me from an untimely death. At the time it felt anything but pleasant, but God knew that I was in spiritual bondage and that I needed to be saved—largely from myself. He was aware that I was spiritually dead and needed to wake up to my predicament. So he sent a series of extremely uncomfortable events my way in order that I might see what I truly needed—Him!

Samson was often impulsive and impetuous. Yet God used his character, complete with its flaws, to rescue Israel from her spiritual death. The strong man did some dubious deeds in order to bring out the fierce hatred and retribution of Israel’s enemy, the Philistines (Judges 15:5,8). By his actions, he orchestrated a confrontation that Israel didn’t want (vv.10-11). But God wanted to bring His people out from under the oppression of the Philistines, even though they resisted His way of rescue. They were content to be ruled over (v.11).

God rescued His disobedient people by using a man who was powerful, yet flawed. He used Samson to rescue His people from their oppressed state, and they hated the strong man for it. They even tied him up and brought him to the Philistines! (v.12).

Sometimes God allows us to go through tough times in order to wake us up. When our spiritual discernment is low, and perhaps we’ve gone cold in our relationship with Him, God sometimes uses alarming circumstances or uncomfortable situations to bring us back to life.

Will you try to make these opportunities go away, as the people of Judah did, or will you embrace them as a loving wakeup call from your Creator? He wants you to experience life in Him to the fullest! Russell Fralick

365-day plan: 1 Samuel 16:1-13

Read Isaiah 52:1-12 and see what God said to His people and what He promised to do for them. 
What wakeup call do you need to accept from God? How does it make you feel to know that God’s love won’t permit you to remain in complacency?