We expect mothers to love their children. But genuine love is not easy, even for a mother. Rizpah had it especially tough (2 Samuel 21:8-10). She had been a secondary wife to King Saul and had borne him two sons, her beloved ones. But Saul had sinned grievously against the Gibeonites. Many years later they asked King David for justice. What they wanted was to execute seven descendants of Saul and expose their bodies openly. David agreed and included both of Rizpah’s sons. In her grief and love, she lived for six months on a rock near the decaying bodies keeping birds and animals from feeding on her sons. Finally, David ordered the bodies buried.
Let me share three lessons from Rizpah. First, love often brings pain. Children bring great pain if they die early or if they fail in some way. Love brings us pain because we care so much for the ones we love and want the best for them. But remember that love is worth the pain. Second, love endures hardship. It was tough for Rizpah to live on that rock for six months, but she endured because of her love. Love will motivate us to overcome. Third, love is faithful. Six months is a long time, but she stayed there on guard until David buried her sons. It is the nature of love to be faithful (1 Cor. 13:7, 8a).
So remember that God sees your pain. He recorded Rizpah’s pain in His book as a memorial. He is not ignoring you, He cares for you. And God enables you to endure. He promises to uphold His people (Isaiah 41:10). He always makes a way so we can endure (1 Cor. 10:13). Finally, God will honor faithfulness. Let us choose to love others and let love motivate us to endure. Let us hear God one day say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” (Matt. 25:21, 23)