Smoked Brisket

David abode in the wilderness in the strongholds, and remained in the hill-country in the wilderness of Ziph. Saul sought him every day, but God didn't deliver him into his hand. 1 Samuel 23:14 WEB

Once upon a time, after a month long fast, we bought a wood smoker. You could call it a rebound effect. The smoker works like an outdoor slow cooker and it is common to take all day. One of the first things that we made was smoked beef brisket, which I had never bought before.

I learned that the brisket is one of the toughest pieces of meat that exists. While trimming it, I could not find a knife in our house that worked, and I tried several. We wrestled with it all over the counter as we tried to hold it down and trim off the edges. Just trying to insert a meat thermometer would push it around the counter top like a rock. Eventually we bought an electric knife that made that part much easier.

We coated the trimmed brisket with a 50/50 salt pepper rub that evening, and put it in the refrigerator over night. The next day we placed it in the smoker at 275f directly on the rack for 6 hours. Then we removed it, wrapped it in tin foil, and put it back in at 225f over night. When we removed it the following day, it was so tender that you could pull it apart with your fingers. You no longer needed a knife at all. The toughest cut of meat was now the most tender, but it took time and heat, lots of both.

David was called, he was anointed, but he needed something else: Preparation. David had to hide from Saul for years, even though he had already been anointed as king by Samuel. God had left Saul and was with David instead, but he still went through many battles and struggles. Eventually David came out of the wilderness and became king.

Moses spent forty years in the wilderness as a simple shepherd, preparing to care for God's sheep (Acts 7:30). Moses had been a strong young man, but instead God chose to begin using him when he turned eighty. After thoroughly baking him, Moses came out of the wilderness in power.

Jesus was the perfect Man, sinless, blameless, and without fault. Yet He spent forty days in the wilderness before He began His ministry. It was a time of testing (Mark 1:13). Jesus came out of the wilderness walking in the power of God.

The trials that you face prepare you for what God has in store. Many like me have been hardened by life, but God would rather us be tender and loving. If you are ever going to do something meaningful, you will have to spend some time in the wilderness. When you come out, you will have credibility because of what you have experienced, and a testimony to share with others. God has a way of softening the toughest of us.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I look to You in faith today. I know that the plans that You have for me are good. I don't understand some of the things that I am going through, but I choose to trust You because You love me and You know best. Guide me today, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray.

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