How David Resolved Conflict with the Philistines

By Martha Bush Conflict Resolution-600

Recently, Lynn and the administrators of Spiritually Unequal Marriage taught a Spiritual Warfare Series. What a great job they did of teaching what Spiritual Warfare means and the tools we may use when in battle. Ironically, I was in my own intense battle at the same time, so I listened intently to what was being said. I knew I needed guidance in how to handle the situation.

I also remembered the stories of David’s battles with the Philistines. There was one that had been in my memory bank for years that had intrigued me. And so I re-visited that story in 11 Samuel 5:17-23 to see what new revelation I could gain, along with the teachings of the administrators.

(17) When the Philistines heard that they had anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines came up to attack David, and David heard about it.”  (KJV)

(19) David inquired of the Lord, “Shall I go up?” “And the Lord said unto David, “Go up: for I will doubtless deliver the Philistines into thine hand.”

And so it was, just as David did, I inquired of the Lord about my situation, “Shall I go up?’  I heard the Lord say, Yes, go up”

“Going up” meant having a heart-to-heart talk with a family member whom I had had an ongoing conflict with for several years.. So, I did my homework on how to handle conflict. Actually, I used a plan Dineen Miller introduced to our community years ago when confronting, called The TCWT Plan

 Truth: Emotions and perception can cloud a situation. Ask God to reveal any truth in yourself that you need to know about the situation prior to confronting.                          

 Conviction: Pray for the other person’s heart for conviction to the wrong, as well as any wrong doing in yourself that might have contributed to the problem.

 Words: Be careful not to place blame and condemnation when confronting.

Timing : Ask God for the right time to discuss the matter, and then walk in confidence.

And so the time came when I felt the nudge to go up. My expectations were high for resolving this matter. However, the confrontation lasted less than 5 minutes because the other person wasn’t interested in discussing the situation at all.

I can’t say that the encounter was a lost cause. Even though the one I confronted wasn’t interested in resolving our ongoing problem, something inside of me changed---the tendency I had had for years of avoiding conflict was being stripped away from me. And perhaps that was why the Lord wanted me to “go up” and confront the situation with a face-to-face encounter. Anytime we walk in obedience, it changes us, whether it does the other person or not.

Back to David---Shortly after the battle David and the Israelites had with the Philistines in verse 19, the Philistines begin to wage another war. Once again David inquired of the Lord what to do.

(23) “Shall I go up?” David asked.”  And the Lord said, “Do not make a frontal assault. Circle around behind them and attack them opposite the balsam trees. (AKJV)

A healing had taken place inside of me when confronting my family member face-to-face, but I was still bothered by the fact that there had been no resolution.  That being said, like David, once again I inquired of the Lord, “Shall I go up?”

Suddenly, these two passages of scripture joined together became a rhema word to me. 

  1. Even though David had defeated the Philistines many times, he didn’t take the strategy used in the last battle to be the same plan. He inquired of the Lord what strategy to use.
  2. Think about it: If David had attacked the Philistines in the second battle the same way as the first, they would have been prepared for the attack. But the Lord instructed David not to have a frontal attack this time, but, go around them and attack them unexpectedly from the opposite direction.
  3. Light bulb moment for me: I knew that I wasn't to have another face-to-face (frontal) encounter with my family member, but go in behind them. It was then I got a visual picture of myself standing behind my family member in prayer while the Lord took up the battle to bring a resolution in His own method for His glory.

One day soon I pray, I will share with you how the Lord resolved this conflict. Stay tuned!


What about you? Does it seem as though you are often in a battle concerning the same situation over and over again?  Perhaps, it is time to change the strategy plans in the battle.  I encourage you to inquire of the Lord what He wants you to do. 


November Tradition - A Tablecloth of Thanks

Hi friends, Lynn Donovan here on this brilliant November 1st as we all step into a season of giving thanks. I'm writing to you from my new home. I am so very thankful for all the Lord has provided. Below is my annual Thanksgiving tablecloth post:

Every year I share this post in November. I wrote it at 15 years of marriage. We are now married for more than 30 years. This tradition is priceless in our family. I pray all of you have one or will make one for your family this year!

Happy Thanksgiving! Love, Lynn

Imported Photos 00008Tablecloth of Thanks 

Many of you know that I am married to an unbeliever. This past March we celebrated 15 years of marriage. Our unequally yoked marriage has had its challenges to say the least. Over the years, however, our ingenious God has maneuvered us through many touchy issues. 

Our disparity becomes more apparent during the holidays. Giving thanks to our Lord in November is a treasured time for me. I name my blessings one-by-one in prayer, thanking God for His lavish abundance poured into our lives. 

Like most wives living in an unequally yoked marriage, I long for my spouse to understand there is a God. To know He is intricately involved in our lives and everything we have is provision of our creator. I have also learned that forcing God upon my husband is a surefire way to push him away. I am careful to respect my husband and simply trust Jesus to reach him in his perfect timing. 

In spite of my husband’s unbelief, I discovered a unique way to draw him into the celebration of thanks, besides through his stomach. He loves turkey. 

Four years ago, I threw a new, pristine-white tablecloth across our dinning room table two weeks prior to Thanksgiving. I purchased several colored pens and placed them on top. A new tradition was born, a Tablecloth of Thanks. It began with my daughter. I told her, “I WANT you to write on this tablecloth.” She looked at me with skepticism in her eyes, wondering if her mother had lost her mind. 

“Really,” my smiled reassured. “Write down what you are most thankful for this year. Then write the year, 2004, near your name.” 

She grinned and began to write using several different colors. I joined in and wrote my thanks directly on the beautiful tablecloth. 

Later that evening my husband noticed the scribbles on the tablecloth. I watched as he walked over to read our words. I walked to his side and took his hand. I subtly asked him if he would also write down his thanks. He smiled and said maybe later. 

Finally on the evening of Thanksgiving Day, my husband picked up a pen and wrote; I am thankful for my wonderful family, great friends, and a very happy life. 

Wow! Was he giving thanks to our Lord? I am not sure. However, every year since he has continued to write a thankful list. Last year’s entry reads; I am thankful for all of my blessings…family, friends, and the dogs. 

What? Did he use the word blessings? Small steps such as these lead to the Savior. I can’t wait to read his thankful list this year. 

The Thankful Tablecloth is one of my most prized possessions. Everyone who visits our home during the Thanksgiving holiday contributes to this permanent memorial of thanks. It is a visible praise to the King displayed in our unequally yoked home each November. 

One of my favorite thanks is this: 

I am thankful
to be able to sit
on the couch and have
my people pet me.

Hmmmm, I wonder how the dog grew fingers and learned to write???? 

Psalm 69:30 (NIV)
I will praise God's name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.


Lord God, I will name my blessings one-by-one….. Jesus… eternal life…. clean water to drink…..capacity to love…..empowerment to forgive….. just for a start….. 

It is never too late to start a new tradition. If you want to start your Tablecloth of Thanks, I have a few helpful hints.

  1. Place a sheet of butcher paper under your tablecloth. (I have a permanent smiley face on my dinning room table from the year 2005)
  2. Use colorfast fabric pens.
  3. Store your tablecloth in an airtight Ziploc bag. 

Thank you my friends for sharing this Holiday treasure with me. I wish you were with me today and could share your thankful heart on the Tablecloth of Thanks.

It's Halloween. What is a Christian to Do?

HalloweenI received a call last week from a frantic young mother who was desperate to receive help and deliverance for her very young daughter. After her description of the frightening things going on in her home and with her daughter, I lay awake most of the night praying and interceding for her child.

This child sees bugs in the bathroom and is terrified and refuses to shower. She has been drooling and talking to people who aren't there. She is under tremendous oppression and needs freedom from the Lord Jesus so much. I’ve prayed with her mother and the author of My Child Sees Monsters, has also prayed with her. I’ve referred her to a deliverance ministry in her city.

As I’ve considered this child’s terrible plight, I grow increasingly outraged with the devil.

My friends, the primary tool of the devil is FEAR. So as we are surrounded by aspects of fear in the stores, in the windows and yards of our neighbors, our children’s Halloween costumes, please consider how fear enters your life and that of your child.

Fear is a REAL spirit and at the root of so much demonic activity.

So, some quick notes of advice this Halloween.

  1. Don’t ever force your children to do something that is frightening. What I mean by this is if there is a haunted house on your block and child is afraid, don’t take them into it. Even if you believe it’s just for fun.
  2. Monitor their screen time. SERIOUSLY. I was visiting my sister last week and she put on the new Hocus Pocus movie. I had to get up a leave. The REAL witchcraft going on in that movie was too much for me.
  3. Don’t take your kids to scary movies. IN FACT, don’t YOU go to scary movies. Watching fright blocks the Holy Spirit.
  4. Pray, pray and pray on Halloween because the absolute wickedness that occurs in the early morning hours is very real.

I’m sure you can offer some advice to our community. Share in the comments. And if you have time, read what a former satanist, John Rameriz, says about Halloween.

Blessings and hugs, Lynn Donovan

October - New Assignments

October Post LDMHey friends,

If you've been a read of my work for any length of time, you know that I see spiritual patterns. I see a lot of change in the month of September and into October.

So, how many of you have received a new assignment from God this month? I know I began to receive downloads of chapter for my next book. This hasn't happened for a long while. Also, a new assignment started for my husband this month.

How about you? What closed out in September?

What is new in October?

See you in the comments. Love, Lynn

Tactius Ancient Historian

TacitusToday, my pastor spoke about standing firm in faith even unto death. Tacitus records the early history of our faith. It's sobering but sometimes we need to stand in faith. I honor those who died and pray that I would be able to stand up for my faith under such prosecution.

It's a sobering read but fascinating. I'm in a curios study of the accounts of the early church and Jesus that are recorded outside of the Bible Tacitus gives credible witness to the truth of the Bible.


The most famous passage in which Tacitus mentions Christianity is as follows (Annals 15.44):  AD 62-65

Such indeed were the precautions of human wisdom. The next thing was to seek means of propitiating the gods, and recourse was had to the Sibylline books, by the direction of which prayers were offered to Vulcanus, Ceres, and Proserpina. Juno, too, was entreated by the matrons, first, in the Capitol, then on the nearest part of the coast, whence water was procured to sprinkle the fane and image of the goddess. And there were sacred banquets and nightly vigils celebrated by married women. But all human efforts, all the lavish gifts of the emperor, and the propitiations of the gods, did not banish the sinister belief that the conflagration was the result of an order.

Consequently, to get rid of the report, Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus, and a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their centre and become popular. Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty; then, upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind. Mockery of every sort was added to their deaths. Covered with the skins of beasts, they were torn by dogs and perished, or were nailed to crosses, or were doomed to the flames and burnt, to serve as a nightly illumination, when daylight had expired. Nero offered his gardens for the spectacle, and was exhibiting a show in the circus, while he mingled with the people in the dress of a charioteer or stood aloft on a car. Hence, even for criminals who deserved extreme and exemplary punishment, there arose a feeling of compassion; for it was not, as it seemed, for the public good, but to glut one man's cruelty, that they were being destroyed.