I’d read the story of Samson to my daughter many times before, but recently as I read her the part about Delilah incessantly pestering Samson to know the secret of his strength, something struck me. Naturally Delilah wore Sampson down by all her nagging until he could take it no longer and finally he told her what make him so strong. But what struck me during this bedtime Bible story, that I had never noticed before was this:
We love The Golden Children's Bible. (It covers more stories than any other children's Bible I know of and rather than a retelling of Bible stories, these stories are straight scripture.)I said to my daughter,
“Look here, Delilah is pestering Samson over and over to know what makes him so strong. She wants to know what would make him as weak as any other man. Three times he gives her phony reasons for what would make him weak, like being tied up with new ropes. (Judges 16:6-9) Then each time Delilah does that very thing to him. (the third time while he slept.) Each time Delilah cries out in fake surprise, “Samson! The Philistines are among us!” To which the Philistines appear, and begin attacking Sampson thinking he has become weak. Clearly there is a pattern forming here.”
What amazed me was when Delilah was pestering Samson to know the true source of his strength, after attempting to subdue him three times and set him up to be attacked by the Philistines, she wears Samson down by her nagging so much that he finally just volunteers what makes him so strong and how he could be made weak as any other man. I said to my little girl “What if Samson had first checked in with God, before telling Delilah his secret? What if he had first asked God, “Why does Delilah keep pestering me about this? Why is she so interested? Should I tell her what makes me so strong and what would make me weak? Can I trust her? Lord, what would you have me to say and do in this situation?“
James invites, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” (James 1:5) Had Samson first checked in with God about Delilah, God would been faithful to reveal the truth about her, clearing up any confusions Samson may have had.
Consider all the grief Samson would have been spared if had simply taken a minute to check in with God through prayer.
- He wouldn’t have known weakness (Judges 16:19)
- He wouldn’t have been overtaken by his enemies who were dying to seek revenge on him (Judges 16:21)
- He wouldn’t have been thrown into prison, mocked, and had his eyes put out by his enemies—the Philistines. (Judges 16:21, 25)
- He wouldn’t of died among his enemies (Judges 16:30)
While we may not suffer to the degree Samson did, when we forget to check in with God first, the same truth applies to us today: It is always worthwhile to check in with God first, because He knows everything and see into a person’s heart and motives in ways we never could. He knows where our decisions are leading us and the consequences of particular decisions made apart from Him.
- If you are looking for a new job, God knows which place would be the perfect place for you to work. He knows which job would have the ideal boss, schedule, or benefits for you.
- If you are looking to buy a house, God knows the perfect house for you to buy. He knows which homes you’ve looked at that have secret problems or will need major, costly repairs in the future.
- If you’re getting married, or your grown child is contemplating marriage, God knows that person perfectly. He knows if marrying that person lines up with His perfect will for your life. He knows if that person doesn’t truly love the Lord and will draw you away from the Lord or if the person shares your love of Jesus and will daily point you to faith and trust in the Lord.
- If you homeschool your kids, God knows which curriculum will appeal most to their learning style and make leaning fun for them.
- When the kids are being difficult, God knows the best way for you to diffuse the situation and restore peace again. He knows the best way for you to bring out the best in your child.
- If the activities of your life are overwhelming, and you feel like you need some breathing room, God knows which actives are the most important and which can be deleted, or just postponed for now. He can show you what is the best use of your time. (Same concept can be applied to your finances if money is a reoccurring source of stress in your life)
Whether we are making major, life-changing decisions, or small, everyday decisions, one thing we can be certain of: we can save ourselves a lot of unnecessary frustration and grief down the road simply by checking in with God first.
Question for You: What benefits do you see in checking with God first, especially in your day-to-day life when decisions tend to be made on autopilot?
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Copyright © 2014 Brooke Espinoza.