Well, back now from the holiday hiatus--and I hope your holidays were restful and meaningful. This year will bring some big changes, certainly.
I was reading 1 Samuel this morning and came across an amazing passage in chapter 30, occurring just after David and his men were sent away from the Philistine army because they were Hebrews, despite having served without fault the whole preceding year. They must have returned to their allotted land with heavy spirits, only to find this:
When David and his men came to Ziklag, they found it destroyed by fire and their wives and sons and daughters taken captive. 4 So David and his men wept aloud until they had no strength left to weep. 5 David's two wives had been captured—Ahinoam of Jezreel and Abigail, the widow of Nabal of Carmel. 6 David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters.
Not only had David been dismissed from his post, his family and those of his men taken captive, and his town destroyed, but also his own men had turned against him. All he had was taken from him.
But David found strength in the LORD his God.