I closed last week talking about Joseph and how he retained deep within himself who he knew himself to be.
Today, consider David
David was the youngest of his siblings, and so lightly considered as part of the family that when the prophet Samuel came to anoint the new king, no one thought to get David for consideration. I Samuel 16:11
But out there in the wilderness as a no-account member of the family, God was tutoring David. David was singing psalms of worship. David was learning how to be skilled with the sling, defending the sheep. A sling can hurl a rock at 1300 feet per second (400m), which is about the velocity of a 44 caliber bullet fired from a modern hand gun.
Though he was considered barely a member of the family, David held within himself who he knew himself to be. He carried that with him into battle against Goliath. That self-awareness enabled him to remain independent from the cowering army. You and I must look for, find, and embrace who God made us and how He gifted us.
(Do not ever slap your Creator in the face by saying you don't have gifts, for you are made in His image and likeness so you do have good things He created you with, for He used parts of Himself to create you. Stop lying to yourself and start finding those good things in you. That is true and humble Christianity, for embracing those things is the acknowledgment we are His creations, an act of humble acceptance. Drop the pride and start looking for and finding and acknowledging and embracing those good things in you.)
David was so secure in himself and the Lord that when confronted he was able to boil it down to the core: "Who is this uncircumcised Philistine who defies the army of the Living God." When he said Goliath was uncircumcised, he was stating that Goliath is not in covenant with the living God, therefore he had no defense before God. It was on that basis and his strong moral structure through which he viewed himself, others, and circumstances, that he entered into battle.
Here comes the destruction of all that noble moral structure
What we see above is the 'real' David. But in II Samuel 11:1-2 we are told King David was at home in the time when kings should be in battle in the field. "But David stayed in Jerusalem."
It was there he spied one Bathsheba bathing on her roof top, daughter of Eliam, wife of Uriah. And he had to have her. He was king after all, couldn't he have any woman he wanted? Against that lust were the commands to not lust, not murder, not lie, not commit adultery. That was woven into his moral fabric as seen above.
But he violated everything that he believed in, violated the way he had lived his life. He destroyed his own moral framework in favor of the lust of a beautiful woman.
When Nathan the prophet confronted David he repented, horrified what he had done, who he had become. He wrote Psalm 51 as a result. Again from earlier in this series, David wrote it down. Like Jeremiah would later do in Lamentations, like God did for Ezekiel, David wrote it out as part of the process of healing and rebuilding himself.
He poured out his heart in what was then a private Psalm. A psalm is a poem set to stringed instrument. As he played he worked through all he had done, and looked deep inside for anything of value worth retaining. Look at the process David went through to remember who he was, and rebuild in wholeness his moral framework:
"Have mercy on me, O God, because of your loyal love.
Because of your great compassion, wipe away my rebellious acts. Wash away my wrongdoing.
Cleanse me of my sin. For I am aware of my rebellious acts; I am forever conscious of my sin. Against you—you above all—I have sinned; I have done what is evil in your sight. So you are just when you confront me; you are right when you condemn me.
Look, I was guilty of sin from birth, a sinner the moment my mother conceived me. Look, you desire integrity in the inner man; you want me to possess wisdom. Cleanse me with hyssop and I will be pure; wash me and I will be whiter than snow. Grant me the ultimate joy of being forgiven. May the bones you crushed rejoice. Hide your face from my sins. Wipe away all my guilt.
Create for me a pure heart, O God. Renew a resolute spirit within me.
Do not reject me. Do not take your Holy Spirit away from me. Let me again experience the joy of your deliverance.
Sustain me by giving me the desire to obey. Then I will teach rebels your merciful ways, and sinners will turn to you.
Rescue me from the guilt of murder, O God, the God who delivers me. Then my tongue will shout for joy because of your righteousness. O Lord, give me the words. Then my mouth will praise you.
Certainly you do not want a sacrifice, or else I would offer it; you do not desire a burnt sacrifice. The sacrifice God desires is a humble spirit. O God, a humble and repentant heart you will not reject. Because you favor Zion, do what is good for her. Fortify the walls of Jerusalem. Then you will accept the proper sacrifices, burnt sacrifices and whole offerings; then bulls will be sacrificed on your altar." Psalm 51
May we work through what was destroyed in order to rebuild a new moral structure, discovering along the way who and what we are - the good things God put in us. It is part of the process. It is the way to healing.
New subject next week, until then, blessings,
www.cwowi.org and email me at firstname.lastname@example.org