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In Chapter 11 the Ammonites came against the Israelites and they gave the nation of God the opportunity to surrender and be in servitude to the Ammonites. Take note of where Saul was when word of the conflict is presented to him,

Just then Saul was coming in from the field behind his oxen. “What’s the matter with the people? Why are they weeping?” Saul inquired, and they repeated to him the words of the men from Jabesh. (1 Samuel 11:5, HCSB, emphasis added)

Where is the king of Israel? Is he sitting in the comforts of the court of a king? Is he in the palace reaping the benefits of being a monarch? No, Saul the anointed king of Israel is in the fields! Saul is in servant mode at this point in his life. He is about tending to the family business. He is on the job. He is like you and me. What he was at that moment of time was poor in spirit. He was not taking advantage of his rank and calling in life. Saul was working the fields, but was available for the opportunity to serve. When the opportunity came he was moved by the Spirit for action,

When Saul heard these words, the Spirit of God suddenly took control of him, and his anger burned furiously. (1 Samuel 11:6, HCSB)

As the story unfolds, Saul as the kingly leader he was called to be, leads the people of Israel to victory over the Ammonites. This could have been an opportune time for pride to come into Saul; it could be time to take credit for his leadership abilities or his mighty valor in battle. Being successful opens a door wide open for pride to enter. Watch out for this trap! When we are successful we need to acknowledge that it was by the Lord’s will, and by His will alone, that we were so blessed and victorious. We never should take credit for any good thing we accomplish in life. That is poor in spirit. Even when the people want to exalt Saul, to give him a little affirmation, a slap on the back, a well-earned thank you, or whatever the world tries to label the pride trap, Saul gives the glory to where the glory is due,

Afterward, the people said to Samuel, “Who said that Saul should not reign over us? Give us those men so we can kill them!” But Saul ordered, “No one will be executed this day, for today the LORD has provided deliverance in Israel.” (1 Samuel 11:12-13, HCSB, emphasis added)

That is poor in spirit. Do not seek affirmation from man and its instant reward; rather serve the Lord knowing your reward is eternal. Let us have the attitude of Saul forever praising our God for his deliverance. Recognize as David said,

You are my hiding place; You protect me from trouble. You surround me with joyful shouts of deliverance. (Psalm 32:7 HCSB)

Use success in your walk to glorify God. Remember to give Him the credit at all times and not rob the Lord the glory due His Name. The way to accomplish this task is to be poor in spirit. Reward God with your life and allow Him to reward you in eternity.

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