Sometimes I wish I had an ephod so I could know what God wants me to do. Seriously – In 1 Samuel 30, David gets sent away from a battle to find his wife and children have been taken by the Amalekites. Not only his family, but also the loved ones of his men. They are so upset it says “they wept until they could weep no more.” (and these were the men crying… I thought only girls could cry like that)
In verse six it says, “David was now in serious trouble because his men were very bitter about losing their wives and children, and they began to talk of stoning him. But David found strength in the Lord His God.”
Next David has the priest bring him a magic bag. Actually they called it an ephod. The ephod looked like a vest and contained pockets that held two stones called the Urim and Thummim. These names mean “curses” and “perfections” and were taken out or shaken to get either a yes or no decision. Scholars aren’t sure exactly what they looked like, but know they were used in situation when the people needed an answer from God – yes or no.
In this case with David, the ephod revealed this, “Yes, go after them. You will surely recover everything that was taken from you.” Of course, that’s exactly what happened. Other times God used the ephod to caution the people or tell them not to proceed.
Sometimes I wish I had a magic vest with “yes” or “no” rocks. I know the New Covenant with God gives us fuller revelation than the Israelites had. I also know that David’s life was no picnic – hiding in caves, on the run from the King, rebellious sons, and the definition of a dysfunctional family. His Psalms give us a glimpse into his pain.
Yet in this case, he could consult the priests special vest of stones for an answer. I have lots of questions –
- Will my daughters hair grow back?
- Will you keep me safe and bless me when I take risks?
- How should I prioritize my time today? (laundry, errands, reaching out to others, rest, study, writing, parenting…)
“God, I know I don’t really need a magic vest. The only magic about the ephod was You. You are supernatural. Help me to listen – to really hear you.” If you are wishing you had a magic vest today to know how to parent your children, what next steps to take, or what the future holds for you – just ask God what to do. Then really take time to listen. He wants to give us direction.
“Then he added, ‘Pay close attention to what you hear. The closer you listen, the more understanding you will be given—and you will receive even more.'” Mark 4:24
Happy listening today!