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  • Writer's pictureKali Gibson

What does it look like to obey God? 



Have you ever wondered what it costs to obey God? Maybe you’re doing everything right, but nothing seems to be going your way. If you’ve ever experienced this, you’re not alone. 


David, the man after God’s own heart, did the right thing, but he still faced opposition time and time again. In 1 Samuel, David is anointed king while Saul is still on the throne. Still, David finds favor with Saul and is given a position in the king’s palace. Everything seems to be going right until Saul becomes jealous of David and tries to kill him. 


In 1 Samuel 23, David is running away from Saul. Then, he sees that Keilah, a city in the lowlands of Judah, is being attacked by the Philistines. 


Despite trying to run from Saul and keep a low profile, David wants to save God’s people from harm. While these are pure intentions, before taking action, David goes to God and asks him if he should save Keilah from the Philistines. God instructs David to attack the Philistines and save Keilah. 


Despite the attention that David would inevitably bring to himself and his men by doing this, David obeys God and saves Keilah. 


Saul hears about David saving Keilah and decides to try to kill him. Instead of running, David seeks God’s wisdom. God confirms that the people of Keilah will surrender David and his men to Saul if he stays. So, David escapes Keilah. After barely escaping death, David stays in the desert where he talks to Saul’s son, Jonathan. Jonathan urges David to not be afraid. He promises him that Saul will not hurt David and that David will be king. 


Maybe you don’t find yourself running from a king who is trying to kill you, but what are you walking through right now? Where is God leading you? What will it cost you? 


For David, God was leading him to save an entire city even though it meant risking his own safety and comfort. Following God’s commands meant that David was going to risk his life. 


We see in the story that before he did anything, David went to God and sought his wisdom and desires first. And, even when God’s commands didn’t line up with what David probably wanted to do, David obeyed God. And in that obedience, God blessed David, protected him, and surrounded him with godly community like Jonathan to encourage him even when he was at his lowest. 


Right now, if God is leading you somewhere you don’t want to go, remember that God always has a plan for you. He sees the big picture. God had a plan for David, he protected David, and he never left him. He will do the same for you. 


So, where is God leading you? What will it cost you? And, are you willing to trust God as you follow him? 




Kali Gibson is the editor-in-chief for So We Speak and a copywriter for the Youversion Bible App.




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