“When David inquired of the LORD, He said, ‘You shall not go directly up; circle around behind them and come at them in front of the balsam trees. It shall be, when you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the balsam trees, then you shall act promptly, for then the LORD will have gone out before you to strike the army of the Philistines.'” (5:23-24)
Timing–how out of our hands it is, and how trusting we have to be to know when it’s right–is everything. There are many ways we “kick against the goads” or try to take matters into our own hands. Time refuses to be grabbed by our grubby little hands.
Time can change circumstances, heal wounds, and give opportunity. In these chapters we finally see David made king over all Israel. He was anointed by Samuel when he was 12. He’s 37 here. 25 years he waited for God’s timing.
“And David realized that the LORD had established him as king over Israel, and that He had exalted his kingdom for the sake of His people Israel.” (5:12)
Perhaps this realization embolden David to wait for the sound of marching on the tops of tress (?!?). At this point, he could have reflected on the crazy road of war, exile, marriages, murders and strife which led him to kingship; making a sound not the most outrageous thing he’s waited for.
Probably I keep picking up on these waiting themes, because I’m in a waiting season. Reframing my annoyance over visas and logistics to a matter of faith is good for me, this morning. What about you? What are you waiting for?
Timing is everything. Something that will be great eventually may not be good now. The LORD is a gardener and He knows when things are ripe.