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Dealing with Frustration (cont'd)

Destined for Victory / Pastor Paul Sheppard
The Truth Network Radio
January 18, 2022 7:00 am

Dealing with Frustration (cont'd)

Destined for Victory / Pastor Paul Sheppard

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January 18, 2022 7:00 am

How Hannah successfully navigated emptiness (being barren), a live-in enemy (Peninnah), and Eli (the priest who misunderstood her); based on 1 Samuel 1.

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And you got enemies, perhaps? If they had their way, they would take you out. If not physically, they'd take out your reputation.

They'd take out your ability to influence others in a positive way. I want you to learn to sing Hallelujah anyhow, even though you've got emptiness, even though you've got enemies. How do you handle your enemies?

Do you roll with the punches, or do you throw a few of your own? Hello and thanks for stopping by for today's Destined for Victory message with Pastor Paul Shepard. We return to the Old Testament now for an account of a woman named Hannah. It's a story about pain and frustration.

There's even a little jealousy and hatred thrown in. As you follow along, Pastor Paul will encourage you to praise God, even when things are going badly, when things are going against you and people are coming against you. Stay with us now, but remember, you can always visit pastorpaul.net to listen on demand. That's pastorpaul.net.

Listen and subscribe to the podcast at Spotify, at Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. Now, here's Pastor Paul with today's Destined for Victory message, Dealing with Frustration. Second frustration that Hannah experiences here in the text, enemies.

Second frustration, enemies. Go to 1 Samuel chapter 1, beginning with verse 6. Because the Lord had closed Hannah's womb, her rival kept provoking her in order to irritate her.

This went on year after year. Whenever Hannah went up to the house of the Lord, her rival provoked her till she wept and would not eat. Her husband, Elkanah, would say to her, Hannah, why are you weeping? Why don't you eat, baby girl? That's in my translation. Why are you downhearted?

Don't I mean more to you than 10 sons? Do you see that? Hannah not only has to deal with emptiness, Hannah has to deal with enemies. Hers is called a rival.

Why? Because she also is her husband's wife. So both of them, in terms of legal status, are on the exact same plane. So she's a rival.

But read it again. Did you see that the woman provokes her for the specific purpose of irritating her? Have you ever run into somebody who is trying to get under your skin? It's not like they just happened up on making you mad.

Their whole purpose was to irritate you. You ever met anybody like that? Or all of your friends and relatives and acquaintances and everybody you deal with are just wonderful people who do great things for you and they smile and they treat you nice and all that.

I don't know anybody like that. Most of the folk I know have some enemies. I would have called it haters, it's just that I was trying to stick with alliteration so I wanted Es to be the frustrations. And so the E is enemy.

But they're haters for all practical purposes. Folk who intentionally are coming for you. Intentionally trying to discourage you. Intentionally trying to get you off course. Intentionally trying to make you mad. Intentionally trying to get under your skin. Intentionally trying to provoke you every chance they get, find little subtle ways to provoke you. Ever met anybody like that?

If you don't have any, I bet you could ask around and we can lend you some if you need some. We all got people who are enemies, people who are haters, people who don't like where you're trying to go in your life and so they are going to do all they can to discourage you on your journey. See some of your haters are doing nothing and they resent that you want to do something in your life and so they hate you for that reason. They provoke you for that reason. They're not going anywhere, they have the crab mentality.

And when they see you trying to climb above, they'll pull you down even if they're not trying to climb. Some people have that crab mentality but not all your haters are crabs. Some of your haters are like you trying to get the best out of life. They're going for the gusto, they're trying to make things happen but they want you to suffer while they succeed.

You ever met people like that? It's as important to them for you to suffer as it is for them to succeed. And so that was Penina. Penina's having the babies so why aren't you just happy? You can have the babies that Hannah can't have. No, no, that's not the way these enemies think.

These enemies say if you are happy, I got to do something about that. And then now think about it. And all the worse in this situation, why? Because Penina has kids but doesn't have the erotic love of her husband. He's dutiful, we've seen that.

He takes care of her and her kids. Let's bring it up to modern time and Western hemisphere thinking. We talk about being in love. The Bible doesn't really focus a lot on that.

You see five folks who have it but it's just not a mainstay like it is in our society. We think being in love is everything. I looked across the crowded room and when our eyes lit upon one another, it was as though we were the only people in the entire room. See, we love that.

We just think that's just it, just ooh, wow, goosebumps, just ooh, wow, mm. Yeah, Bible says, yeah, that happens sometimes, that's cool. But that's not the big deal. The big deal is you got to learn that love can't just be the way you feel.

Love has got to be what you do in the best interest of the person you say you love. So anyway, Penina has the kids but she knows Hannah has his heart. And she's like, I'm his baby mama but Hannah's got his heart.

I want the heart and can't get it. So tell you what, I'm going to make sister heart suffer. And she goes after her relentlessly.

Did you notice how relentless it is? Not only did she do it when they went up to the house of the Lord, but the Bible says that she did it constantly, constantly. She was always provoking her. She's always looking for an opportunity to get under Hannah's skin, always looking.

Now come on, some of you sisters going to get mad at me, but I'm just going to go on and say it. And you just ask the Lord to help you with your anger toward the pastor. You know that some women have the gift of provoking another woman. Some women have the gift of provoking another woman. We're just kind of wired, the genders are wired a little differently.

And there are men who definitely have the issues, anger and all kinds of stuff. But when a man is your rival, chances are he want to come head to head in some real aggressive way, brother want to beat you down or whatever it is. That's the way we express our stuff when it comes to rivals. We want to win, make you lose in some competition or I'm stronger than you or I'm better looking than you or I'm distant. That's men, I just want to win.

We're contest oriented. Sisters can be more subtle. Y'all do the sophisticated kind of provoking. I know you know what I'm talking about, you're mad at me, but you know I'm telling the truth. Some women have a gift.

Some women have an undergrad degree in provocation, so I've met some with a master's degree in provocation and there are a few PhDs in provocation. They know how to get, because they do it with little subtleties. Those kind of bananas walk around when they get pregnant and just make sure they get around where Hannah is and say, ooh, this baby just kicking. Ooh, this baby just kicking. I don't know why this baby won't be still with Hannah right there.

She know why she talking about that baby. And this is the kind of thing that's going on. All right, enough for this one, because this message is really about you. How are you dealing with your enemies? How are you dealing with your enemies? How are you dealing with your haters? How are you dealing with the people provoking you? With the people who don't like that you're trying to go somewhere or who don't like that you're succeeding and you have some things they don't have and they want to tear you down. They want to provoke you.

Even if circumstantially you're in a good shape, they want to make sure mentally and emotionally you're in bad shape. Bullies, you ever run into a bully? You ever run into somebody who just beat you down at every opportunity and they use foul language and foul descriptions for you? They just say there's nothing good about you as they would say it. And you've got to deal with them and their hateration.

How are you doing with that? Have you gotten to the place where you realize you just got to be honest and say not only God, do I have the frustration of some emptiness, I have the frustration of some people that I can't seem to get rid of in my life. They keep showing up and when they show up, they always have a new provocation. Are you processing how your enemies are treating you? Because enemies come in all forms, all forms. You can have stranger enemies or you can have in the case of Al-Qaeda and his two wives, you can have enemies who share the same household. You can have stranger enemies, but you can also have enemies who have your last name, who live at the same address. When you read your Bible, enemies come in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes they're real close, they're right in your family like this case here.

Sometimes they come from out of town to get on your nerves. Don't believe me? Ask Nehemiah. Read the book of Nehemiah. Nehemiah's doing a work. God's called him to rebuild the wall of Jerusalem.

He's minding his business, doing the work. He and the people that he's gathered and they've bought into the vision, they've risen up and said, let us build and they're building and here comes Sambalad and Tobiah. They don't live in town, they're not from Jerusalem. What they doing showing up? They show up to provoke, they show up to discourage, they show up to ridicule.

Read it when you get a chance. They say, oh, do you all think you're building a wall? This is nothing.

If a fox climbed up on this, they said at one point in the book of Nehemiah, if a fox walked on this, he'd tear it down, trying to get in Nehemiah's head. You ever had people try to get in your head, just belittle everything you do? You're doing a work and they call it little. I notice how people use the word little as a provocation. Oh, that's your little job. Oh, that's your little dress.

Oh, that's your little car. They use little subtleties to try to provoke you. Enemies, they don't like that you're happy. You ever met folk when they see you happy, they say, I'm going to do something about that. We can't stand for this happiness.

And they come for you. Still ahead, the second half of today's Destined for Victory message with Pastor Paul Shepherd, Senior Pastor at Destiny Christian Fellowship in Fremont, California. We want to thank all of you who sustained Destined for Victory with your prayers and financial support, gifts that help Pastor Paul share the gospel all over the world. Destined for Victory is a listener supportive ministry, so as God leads, please prayerfully consider making a gift today. You can give online securely at pastorpaul.net or call 855-339-5500. Coming up next, Pastor Paul offers a prescription for handling our enemies God's way.

Let's join him now for the second half of today's message, Dealing with Frustration. Sam Ballot and Tobiah show up, and first, in the book of Nehemiah, they ridicule, but when Nehemiah learns to ignore them and just tells folk, keep on building, and when they come back, the wall has progressed and it's better now, and the second time they come back, they come back with pure hatred, and they come back with a strategy to try to kill Nehemiah, and you got enemies, perhaps, that you got to learn to say hallelujah anyhow despite the fact that they have it in for you. If they had their way, they would take you out. If not physically, they'd take out your reputation.

They'd take out your ability to influence others in a positive way, and so you got to grapple with this. I don't want you just trying to sing an empty hallelujah anyhow. I want you to learn to sing hallelujah anyhow even though you've got emptiness, even though you've got enemies. One more thing about this. The third frustration that Hannah experiences is a man named Eli.

We read about him. Eli is the priest in the house of God at Shiloh. Year after year, the family goes up to worship God at Shiloh, and Elkanah, you read it, make sure that everybody has the right meat and all of that. They make sure that what they're doing in the house of God is in order and everybody's need is taken care of. Hannah, though, goes up, and because of this emptiness and because of the enemy, she's needing to talk to God.

That's what you got to learn to do. Talk to God about your emptiness. Talk to God about your enemies.

Look at this. First Samuel one, verse nine. Once they had finished eating and drinking in Shiloh, she stood up. Hannah stood up.

Now, Eli the priest was sitting on his chair by the doorpost of the Lord's house. In her deep anguish, Hannah prayed to the Lord. Prayed to the Lord.

Watch this, weeping bitterly. And she made a vow, saying, Lord Almighty, if you will only look on your servant's misery and remember me and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give that son to you all the days of his life. And no razor will ever be used on his head, meaning he'll be a Nazarite who lives under a covenant with God. Verse 12. As she kept on praying to the Lord, Eli observed her mouth.

Hannah was praying in her heart, and her lips were moving, but her voice was not heard. Eli thought she was drunk and said to her, how long are you going to stay drunk? Put away your wine. Oh my goodness. Man of God just said girl, you need to cut out all that drinking. Now he didn't mean any harm. Eli's a good servant of God. He didn't mean any harm, but what he saw he didn't understand.

That's not bad. All of us see things we don't understand. Here's the problem. But then he assumed it was something it wasn't. He saw her muttering as she talked and he looked over and he said, that looked like she came up here drunk.

Lord, that child came up here drunk in the house of God drunk. No, it's okay to see what you don't understand. It's never okay to assume. You need to find out. You need to investigate.

Instead of investigating, he came with an accusation. Eli's can be frustrating because these folks aren't enemies. They don't have anything for you.

Do you have Eli's in your life? They love you. They don't have anything for you. Their life's goal isn't to provoke you, kill you, hurt you, damage you.

None of that. Eli's love you. Have your best interests at heart, but they don't always behave properly. They don't always speak properly. They don't always investigate sometimes.

They assume and then they charge you falsely. Eli's are a category of people you got to learn to deal with because we've all got them. See, once you know somebody's an enemy, then you put yourself in a position of, okay, I'm going to never give them the ability to take a clean shot at me because I know they have it in for me. So you're guarded, rightly so, when your enemies, when your rivals, when your haters show up. What you're not guarded with is when your Eli's are around because Eli's are the people who say, if you need me, call me, no matter where you are, no matter how far. Just call my name.

I'll be there in a hurry. On that you can depend and never worry. Only the old folk know what I'm talking about. I'm going back to the late 70s now, Diana Ross. Ain't no mountain high enough. Ain't no valley low enough.

Ain't no river wide enough to keep me from getting to you. That's what Eli says. Eli cares for her.

He loves her. But even though they love you, they don't always come through. They don't always process correctly. They don't always investigate. Sometimes they accuse. Sometimes Eli's, with their good intentions, make stupid decisions.

Stupid decisions. I've been an Eli. Have you ever been an Eli?

Come on, stop trying to look so holy. Have you ever meant well, but what you did, what you said, what you didn't do, what you didn't say, really made things worse. And so she had to deal with an Eli. But she learned to push through. Despite her emptiness, she said I'm going to take my emptiness to God when I get to Shiloh. In spite of her enemy, her rival, she said I'm just not going to let her get to me.

Yeah, she makes me weep. Yeah, you saw there were times when she worked her over so good that Hannah didn't even eat. And her husband said, baby, why don't you get, come on, get something to eat. No, appetite gone because of this woman. You know Peninnah was happy. Ooh, that's good. I made her get up from the table. And now what do you do with your Eli's?

You do what Hannah did. Look at what happens when you read the rest of it. She goes on to say, no, no, man of God, I'm not drunk. I have bitterness of heart.

And she explains what he should have never assumed. Now you know some of y'all got to learn to deal with things because sometimes you get mad. And some of you get madder at people who mean you well because they disappoint you more. What you have to learn to do is don't come for people who are trying to help you. I just said something. Don't come for people who are trying to help you if they don't have all the understanding.

Give them the understanding and then express appreciation for how they're trying to help you even though they don't always do it perfectly. Bottom line, my friend, is she said to the man of God, she cleared him up. She said, I'm just bitter of heart.

I want God to give me a child. And what happened? He then got on the page with her, said, well, God bless you. And by the time she left Shiloh, she had the agreement of Eli. And he was a partner in that prayer. And the bottom line, long story short, is the Lord opens her womb. And God blessed her. And as it turns out, the reason God had closed her womb was because he wanted to get her to this place where when she was so frustrated, she would take it to God. That was what he wanted. And the prayer of her heart, which was what he wanted to be, was if you give me a son, I'll give him back to you.

In redemptive history, God knew that was crucial because Samuel, the prophet Samuel, the great priest and prophet in the Old Testament, came out of the womb of Hannah. And it was that son that she prayed for as she dealt properly with her frustrations. My friend, I want you this week and in the weeks, months, and years to come, stay in touch with your frustrations, but don't lose your faith. Bring it to God. Work it through. Let the Lord have his way in your life.

Do you have enemies in your life? Praise God anyway. His word promises you that no weapon formed against you will prosper, even if that weapon is another human being. If you need prayer today, if you have enemies coming against you and you feel hopeless or frustrated, the Destin for Victory ministry team would like to help. Visit pastorpaul.net and use the contact feature to share your prayer request so that we can join you in prayer. While you're there, you're invited to sign up for Pastor Paul's monthly letter of encouragement, yours at no cost or obligation.

Keep in mind that Destin for Victory is fully supported by friends and listeners like you. In appreciation of your generous gift today, Pastor Paul would like to send you his DVD message, Influencers for Christ. We do live in an ever-darkening world that needs the people of God to shine his light upon it, and as Jesus said, we, his church, are that light. In this message, Pastor Paul encourages us to make it a priority to show others the goodness of God, to tell them all about his love for them and their need for him. That's Influencers for Christ, a DVD message from Pastor Paul, which is our gift to you by request for your generous donation to Destin for Victory. Call 855-339-5500, or visit pastorpaul.net to make a safe and secure donation online. You can also mail your gift to Destin for Victory, Post Office Box 1767, Fremont, California, 94538.

Again, our address is Destin for Victory, Box 1767, Fremont, California, 94538. Yes, every now and then, people will put a good, positive label on you, but for the most part, just look around your life. Most of the labeling we see going on when it comes to other people is negative, and we need to get out of the negative labeling business because we serve a savior who said, I didn't come to condemn you. I came so that you would be saved. That's tomorrow when Pastor Paul Shepherd shares his message dealing with labels. Until then, remember, he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion. In Christ, you are destined for victory.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-22 19:37:36 / 2023-06-22 19:47:31 / 10

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