Friday, December 16, 2016
Then King David went in and sat before the Lord and prayed, “Who am I, O Sovereign Lord, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far? And now, Sovereign Lord, in addition to everything else, you speak of giving your servant a lasting dynasty! Do you deal with everyone this way, O Sovereign Lord? “What more can I say to you? You know what your servant is really like, Sovereign Lord. Because of your promise and according to your will, you have done all these great things and have made them known to your servant. “How great you are, O Sovereign Lord! There is no one like you. 2 Samuel 7:18-22a(NLT)
King David had received so much – a throne over all Israel, wealth beyond measure, and acclaim by people throughout the known world. Life was really good for the former shepherd boy who took down Goliath with nothing but a slingshot and faith in JHWH.
And the king, humble as his sheepherder’s roots, looks at it all and thinks, am I greater than God? Who am I to have all this stuff, while the Lord God of heaven still only has that tent for a home? So David, ever the servant of his God, checked with Samuel the prophet about building JHWH’s temple. Eventually, through Samuel, God said it wasn’t David, but his son Solomon who would build the temple, as God was planning to bless David’s lineage in an even greater way. Our scripture this morning is King David’s prayer after learning all this.
The part of David’s prayer that grips me most is his honest and humble transparancy: You know what your servant is really like, Sovereign Lord.
David is alone with God, and the immensity of David’s fame, fortune, and power in human society and history means nothing; it’s all about his God, JHWH. At that moment David, standing in respect, bowing in humility is still that shepherd boy – not the powerful king of sovereign Israel. He is a child with his Abba, Father, and he utters the words an overwhelmed, blessed, and highly-favored child must:
O Lord – You know me, and yet you still love me and want to bless me!
And here we are today…you and I, at that meeting time with God at morning or whatever time, and I know you can identify with David. Well, you may not be a king, but you understand what David said: How can a God who knows our inmost being still love us and want to bless us?
Can we talk?
You know you; I know me. Frankly, there is a part of me that says if anyone else really knew me, everything of my life, thoughts and weaknesses, they’d hit the road and never look back in my direction. But JHWH knows all that stuff; he knows me and all my crumbling faith, insincerity and fear even better than I know me, and still He loves me like an heir to the throne!
It is no wonder at all that David exclaimed to his God:
“How great you are, O Sovereign Lord! There is no one like you.
In writing the New Testament book of Acts, Luke recounts Israel’s history and shares with us that God called David a man after my own heart.[ii] And this whole prayer is why that is so. David looked at how JHWH had blessed him and wanted to respond by blessing God. JHWH had other plans, but in revealing those plans, blessed David even more. David sensed his insignificance compared to the great Sovereign God of heaven’s creation and eternity – yet was incredibly overwhelmed with how much he was loved.
It’s true…no one but JHWH loves like that!
David’s words are a wonderful prayer for us to hold today. But holding the words alone, absent of walking the way those words direct, will leave the words empty and meaningless. Let the words drop from your mouth to your heart…and then to your feet. Let King David’s prayer of blessing the Lord be your life’s mission!
[ii] Acts 13:22