Courage In the Middle of Lentils

You never know what might inspire you while eating a bowl of lentils. Today my bowl of soup seemingly called out to me, “Where is your courage, Jeanie?”  20150319_18401420150516_145102

Stay with me here.  The lentils may speak to you as well.

David (as in the young boy who slew the giant and became King of Israel and…even in his sin and repentance…was described as a man after God’s own heart) teaches me about courage “in the middle of lentils”.

2 Samuel  23 recounts some of the courageous acts of David’s “mighty men”. One of these men (named Shammah) showed great courage in the midst of lentils.

The Philistines were a powerful  and foreboding people who intimidated the Israeliites. The fierce and pompous Philistine army banded together in a field of lentils, producing fear and trepidation among the Israelites. As the Israelites ran away in fear, one lone Israelite, Shammah, stood in the middle of the lentil field. He was not afraid of the powerful Philistine army, and defended this field in the name of the Lord, who brought about a great victory that day. Yes, God used Shammah’s conviction and courage to bring about a great victory for God. The victory did not come through Shammah’s great strength. God’s unrivaled power, combined with Shammah’s conviction and courage, defeated the seemingly formidable Philistine army.

 Next to him was Shammah son of Agee the Hararite. When the Philistines banded together at a place where there was a field full of lentils, Israel’s troops fled from them. But Shammah took his stand in the middle of the field. He defended it and struck the Philistines down, and the LORD brought about a great victory.
(2 Samuel 23:11-12) 

How deep are your convictions today?  What do you really believe about God and his message to us all? Do you let current viewpoints from our world, our politicians, world religious leaders, and celebrities mold your convictions and affect your courage–or are your beliefs about God and his word rock solid– filling you with courage?

God knows we will be tempted to conform to the pattern of the world and calls us to be transformed by the renewal of our thinking. Then, the beauty and perfection of God’s plan will speak for itself. And his plan is good, pleasing and perfect.

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.  (Romans 12:2)  

Don’t be afraid to stand for God. Gain courage to speak boldly of the things God states. Let the Scriptures burn in your heart and flow from your lips. Teach your children to be “prepared to answer” and help them learn the basics of apologetics so they can be confident in the midst of a godless world and a sea of peer pressure.

Let Romans 1:16 fill you with courage whenever you stand in a field of lentils and everyone else cowers:   I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.

I pray that you and I will be filled with the confidence God provides and never shrink back as we stand in our fields of lentils–our personal tests of courage..

So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For in just a very little while, “He who is coming will come and will not delay. But my righteous one will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him.” But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved.
Hebrews 10:35-39 

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  1. lizzylit

    I love this, Jeanie! You have a gift for finding God in everyday things…even a bowl of lentils! Thanks–will share on my moms’ FB page Friday! xoxo

    • jeanieshaw

      You are so encouraging, Elizabeth. Thanks and thanks for sharing!

  2. Lucy

    Thanks Jeanie
    It is a great lesson about courage.i was convicted on how we should not let our convictions watered down under pressure from the world or its influences.God will richly reward us when we persevere.Love Lucy

  3. mary phillips

    Very encouraging. ❤ 💖 💕 💓 💗 💟. I have been trying to continue to study with my roomate Lauren but she has been pulling away. This really encourages me. Thank you. In him, Mary

    • jeanieshaw

      Thanks for sharing, Mary. This encourages me. 🙂


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About Jeanie Shaw

After retiring from forty-five years in full-time ministry, Jeanie Shaw went back to school to earn her master’s and doctorate in spiritual formation and discipleship. She also serves as a certified Christian life coach who loves helping people discover the joy, peace, and purpose that come from finding and following God’s plan for their lives. She has taught classes and workshops all over the world and has written numerous books. She has four grown children, eight grandchildren, and a golden retriever who thinks he is human. When she is not reading, writing, coaching, teaching, or enjoying her family she might be found walking along rivers, learning new lessons about life.

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