We are starting our new sermon series in 1 Samuel this week and as I have been reading through the book I have been reflecting on the person of King David who is a key player in the narrative. The Bible portrays David as being a “man after God’s own heart” which is a pretty amazing statement. Yet when you look closely at his life David was far from perfect and there are many other characters you would thing would be more worthy of that title. David after all was an adulterer and a murderer!
Yet it seems there was something about him and his heart that God loved despite his terrible behaviour at times. Reflecting on this raised some interesting things. Firstly I am so grateful that God forgives people like David and me when we let him down so badly (there were consequences for David though), secondly what was it about David’s heart that God loved and what is the state of my own heart towards God? Do I have a heart that is after his?
Despite his flaws David had some outstanding characteristics that we should all aspire to which I think reflect the heart of God and were some of the things that God loved about him. He readily admitted his guilt with no excuses. He constantly threw himself on the mercy of God when he was in danger, down, found out, or just dry and worn out. He worshiped God passionately and was not afraid to show that publicly or to lead the people in worship himself, even though his own wife thought him undignified. He penned dozens of psalms pouring out his soul to God and also great songs of praise and adoration. He often sought God’s will and was obedient when God commanded him to do certain things.
So having a heart after God doesn’t mean you have to be perfect! Thank goodness for that! But when we look at our heart, our own agendas, where we put our trust and what we worship, are we like David? Despite his failings I would love to be more like David. I would love to pray this prayer with him. “Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me”.
Grace and Peace – Garry Parker