There was no deliverer, because it was far from Sidon and they had no dealings with Aram.
Judges 18:28 (NRSV)
Wendy and I have been in a new phase of life the past few years. I’ll call it the proto-empty nest. The girls have been off living in different places, traveling hither and thither, and establishing their own independent lives. There is still, however, the safety net of home within proximity. Help is still, relatively speaking, a phone call away. I may not be close enough to just hop over and help with flat tire in another state or country, but advice, tech support, and 24 hour concierge service is only a phone call away. If things get in a nasty bind, you can always go home to revive, regroup, and relaunch.
In today’s chapter a little community of Sidonians were living in the land of Canaan. The tribe of Dan besieged the city and were victorious. The victory was, in part, due to the fact that the Sidonian villagers were not within proximity of help from their own people. When the “fit hit the shan” (as my dad was fond of saying), they had no safety net or support network to deliver them in their hour of need.
That got me thinking this morning about my own willful choices along life’s journey. It’s one thing to willfully choose to strike out on your own path and go your own way. Rebellion, running away, and going your own way are choices each one of us can make. It’s quite another thing when you so distance yourself from your support network as to put yourself at risk.