1 Samuel 4:11, “The ark of God was captured, and Eli’s two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, died.”
As a kid, did you ever see a flock of birds and chase after them? No matter how fast you were, each time you went after the birds they were too quick to be captured! That is how the Israelites saw the Philistines. The Israelites had lost their first battle against the Philistines. But the second time in battle, the Israelites thought that they would win because of their possession of the ark of the covenant. However, the Philistines once again slipped away and defeated the Israelites, even though the Israelites had the “holy” box of God. Not only did they win the battle, but the Philistines also captured the ark. This was so devastating to the Israelites that when a messenger told Eli, the priest, he fell over, broke his neck & died. The Philistines were thrilled about their newly-captured treasure; they thought they were now set for life. Little did they know, it would turn out to be a horrible possession because they forgot that God could not be contained in a box. They didn’t know that you can’t capture God. And they didn’t understand that his greatest desire is to capture us. Sometimes we get so caught up in the battle of life that we forget that God is the one who will win every battle. But, we have to first come to the conclusion that we can’t capture God; we can’t bend him to our will. Then, we have to understand that God wants to capture us. And that is when we will experience true victory!
Put a reminder on your phone and take several moments today to see if there is anything you are trying to deal with alone. Remember that God is the one who can help with anything, but we have to come to him. We have to allow him to capture us – our attention, our heart, our trust. Ask God to help you win the victory!
God, I thank you for loving me enough to fight my battles with me. Thank you for wanting to capture me and keeping me on the path that you have made for me. In times of struggle, remind me to look towards you first to help me live life in victory. Amen!