The Power of Community
The Power of Community
In the days of Shamgar son of Anath, in the days of Jael, the main ways were deserted, because travelers kept to the side roads. Villages were deserted, they were deserted in Israel, until I, Deborah, I arose, a mother in Israel.
Shamgar was the third judge of Israel, and Deborah was the fourth. During the days of Shamgar, people kept to themselves. The main travel ways and villages were deserted, which indicates a lack of community and fellowship among the people. Beware! If the devil can get you isolated or withdrawn, he can take dominion over you trough attack!
One of the devil’s first strikes against a godly community is to destroy the fellowship. We’ve seen this in churches, families, and friendships. There is power when God’s people are in unity because they can help carry one another’s burdens and lift each other up in times of need. They can encourage each other and edify one another. Together, they can accomplish great things for the kingdom of God. Alone and isolated, they are ineffective and weak.
Deborah united Israel. She encouraged the men into battle and even went with them herself. One commentary I found suggested that Deborah actually assembled an army in Ephraim while Barak marched up Mt. Tabor. This sent Sisera into confusion because he now had two threats against him. Deborah helped the men of Israel gain the courage to fight. They needed to work together because they had a common enemy.
Sometimes, having a common enemy is the very thing that can unite a group. Despite our differences and our personal preferences, we are all on the same side and fighting for the same cause. Realizing this can keep our focus on the true priority and overlooking petty differences that cause strife.
Our country is greatly divided today, and multiple threats to our national security lurk all around us. Yet, there is power when God’s people are in unity, and we need to operate in that power to be victorious. Find a strong, supportive community of believers who will encourage and edify you, and be someone who will help build up and not tear down. Construction is better than criticism, and love covers a multitude of offenses. Don’t let the devil have your community. Nourish it, care for it, and fight for it. It is God’s gift to protect you from personal invasion.
Have a blessed day!