Lessons from the Life of David


I love reading the Psalms. Many of which were written by David. His is a “Man after God’s own heart” according to God himself-mine too. David is real in his worship to the Lord. He isn’t perfect and tells us all about his faults, fears and sin. After committing adultery with Bathsheba and having her husband (along with several other soldiers) murdered, he writes Psalms 51, “Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love: according to your great compassion blot out my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.” He remembers his days as a simple shepherd boy in Ps. 23, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want, He makes me to lie down in green pastured; He leads me beside quiet waters.” David lets us know when things got tough for him, Ps. 69, “Save me, O God, for the waters have threatened my life. I have sunk in deep mire, and there is no foothold; I have come into deep waters and a flood overflows me. I am weary with my crying, my throat is parched; my eyes fail while I wait for my God,” and then David always hopes, expects and declares God’s salvation, “O God, in thy greatness of thy loving-kindness answer with thy saving truth.”
David may have begun his life as a simple seventh son of a shepherd, but his heart of thanksgiving, his desire to see God, his determination to magnify the Lore, were all things that God could use. Was David perfect? Obviously no, ask his multiple wives, his concubines, his children…but God used David mightily. He wrote songs and praises to his God. He conquered the enemies of God as a mighty warrior, and he ruled as King over God’s people for 40 years.
Another lesson to learn from David, he didn’t work his way to the top. He humbly watched his father’s sheep and when asked came and sat at the feet of Saul, who was tormented by evil spirits, to play his harp and bring relief to his king. Before he fought his first real battle, if you disregard the lion, bear and the Giant, Goliath, God anointed the simple shepherd boy with the heart of worship as King. Even after Samuel anointed David, he was content to wait for God to place him on the throne. He steadfastly refused to harm Saul in any way, contrary to the advice of his own men. He repeatedly said, “Touch not God’s anointed” and even killed the messenger who came to proclaim the death of Saul and take credit for his undoing.
We are all human, including the great men and women of faith that we find in Scriptures. They feared, sinned, got weary and sad. They lost heart, friends, family and some even their lives. But like David, they loved God, and were willing to be used by him. So to me, the most important lesson to be learned from David is to keep your passion for the Lord white hot, fan the flames of love that is in your heart by praising Him, even when things aren’t going as planned or as hoped for. Wouldn’t you want to hear the Lord say, “That’s a man after my own heart” about you?

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