David led the troops in their campaigns. In everything he did he had great success, because the Lord was with him. When Saul saw how successful he was, he was afraid of him. —1 Samuel 18:13-15
There is the loneliness of success. When you are successful, you will find that some people will desert you. They liked you when you weren’t successful; they thought you were nice. You start succeeding, you get high marks, you obtain a good job, you have a higher income (it’s envy, of course; that is all it is)—they can’t cope with that. But you wouldn’t be any different if it was reversed (you have to understand that), but you need to know that success means loneliness.
On the other hand, if you are successful, whereas some will desert you, others will cling to you. But what are their motives? It is not necessarily you they are interested in.
When you are successful or well known, you will find you can be very lonely. For when there is an anointing upon you, you will succeed in some sense. There may be those who are envious of you and believe that eventually you are going to fall. King Saul was so jealous of David that he would have done anything to get rid of him. King Saul had a great plan. He said, “I tell you what; how would you like to marry my daughter? But I think you should do something to earn it.”
David said, “Oh, I am not worthy to be the king’s son-in-law.”
“Oh, well,” said King Saul. “I’ll tell you what I want you to do. All I would ask you to do is to bring back one hundred foreskins of the Philistines, that’s all!”
The only reason King Saul suggested this was that he thought David would be killed in doing it; that was King Saul’s sole motive. But David came back with two hundred foreskins.
When there is an anointing upon you, you will succeed at a certain level, but don’t expect your enemies to clap their hands. They will hate you all the more.
Excerpted from The Thorn in the Flesh (Charisma House, 2004).