When King Achish sent David away from the battle, David and his men were able to return home in time to rescue their families from the Amalekites. Had they remained with the Philistines, they would have returned home too late to make this kind of difference. After they beat and plundered those who had beaten and plundered them, David sent gifts to elders in Judah, thus strengthening friendships that would later come in very handy. This, too, could not have happened if David had not been publically humiliated by being asked to leave the army and go home.
David is not alone here. We see this “necessary negative” embedded in lives throughout the Bible. If God is the same yesterday, today and forever, might He still do the same for His people today? When things go counter to the way I would have liked, do I grumble and complain or do I trust that the Lord is at work even when it seems like the work I want to do is no longer possible? What about you? How might God use the “negative” things in your past (or present) to prepare for a positive result in the future?
I am not saying that we will be able to connect the dots and see a reason for every bad thing that happens. But I am saying that God’s promise to use all things for our good (Romans 8:28, 29) and His command to give thanks in all things (1 Thessalonians 5:18) can be trusted, even when we feel rejected, humiliated or are just wasting our time in exile.
By faith then, let us encourage one another to practice giving Him thanks, no matter what may have happened to us or be happening around us.