(August 26, 2014)
There were two thoughts that I had as I read through these chapters. The first was on David’s efforts to seek out the Lord’s will constantly – even when doing things that should appear to be well within his temporal stewardship. As a king, it was his obligation to protect his subjects, and the decision of war and peace (and tactics) were his to make. And yet twice he took the matter to the Lord, and did so in a way that demonstrated his willingness to obey the Lord regardless (‘shall I go against the Philistines?’).
Likewise, I think I make the mistake of believing that there are some elements of my life too temporal to take before the Lord. But this ought not be the case. I should be willing to take the matters to the Lord and ask Him, ‘shall I go against Dr. Such-and-such’ in litigation, for example. And I should be prepared to modify my tactics or strategies based upon the answers that I receive from the Lord.
The other thought that I had was on Michal. I have been struggling to come to some understandings between what the world wants and what the Lord wants. It seems that effectiveness in the world (including, ironically, effectiveness in presenting the Gospel) seems at times to require actions contrary to the Lord’s will. I look at my life and see changes that I could easily make that would improve my circumstances, but they seem inappropriate to do even though the consequences would all be positive. I am pushed at times to priorities ends over means.
But I see in this a lesson to be learned. David was correct to rejoice in the Lord (he had not yet fallen from Grace). Michal, on the other hand, was embarrassed and ashamed at David’s actions. This was not a problem with David, it was a problem with Michal. And David was correct to rejoice in the Lord – even though that brought Michal to despise him.
It is fine to be aware of the world, but when we are placed in a position of prioritizing following the Lord’s will or improving the reactions of others (even to things that we think are very, very important) we must always put the Lord first. He is able to make up the difference. This has been a struggle for me to reconcile my mind to lately – I have seen an easy path to something important, but I have not been willing to take it because while it is easy it is also wrong. This has left me feeling very conflicted because of the pain this also causes others. But reading this, I realize that the important thing is to be right with the Lord and if that isn’t enough for others, then they can despise me or not as they choose and I will rely on the Lord to make up the difference.