Reading my Bible over the last week or two I've been reading about the life of King David. David is one of the most amazing men on the pages of Scripture because his life was a life that experienced the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat. He went from being a national hero in his victory over Goliath, being crowned King of Israel and with God's help, expanded Israel's military prowess; to bringing national disgrace upon himself and his country with his sin with Bathsheba. His failed cover up attempt in having her husband killed in the heat of battle; surviving a coup attempt by one of his sons and being forced into exile were awful low points in David's life. The Scriptures display David as a testosterone filled man with all of his faults, flaws and good points on display for us to see.
What I love about David is that his life, in spite of all of David's problems, was a life God used in an amazing way and God's commentary on David's life is summed up in Acts 13:22 "...He raised up for them David as king, to whom also He gave testimony and said, ‘I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My own heart, who will do all My will.'" How can a guy who committed adultery and then murder to cover it up be called a man after God's own heart? How can a guy whose family was such a mess be held up as an example to us in the Scriptures and God say of him "he's a man after my own heart."?
The answer lies in this fact: When God confronted David through the prophet Nathan with his sin, David took immediate and full responsibility for his sin, he did not blame-shift to Bathsheba for taking a bath on the roof of her house, he didn't blame his parents for his upbringing, he didn't blame the government, he didn't blame the schools, or even his enemies. David took responsibility for his sin and said: "I have sinned against the Lord" (2nd Samuel 12:13). Short, sweet and right on target with reality - "I am the one who sinned against the Lord."
Later the Bible gives us David's full confession of his sin to the Lord in Ps. 51. When you see David's actions and when he sinned, he took responsibility and owned up to his sin, no excuses, no trying to justify or explain away or "spin" his actions for political gain. God said because of this, David was a man after His own heart - in other words, David and I are on the same page and he demonstrates his love for me because he listens to me when I confront him with who he really is, he's not perfect but he's my child because I gave him a new heart, and he will do all my will.
Wow. David's life is an encouragement to me that warts and all, victories and failures, God can use me in spite of my self; God and make something beautiful of my life for His glory when I take responsibility for my sin. He's an encouragement to me that I can still be a testosterone filled man, I don't have to be some effeminate wimp to love Jesus and follow hard after Him. David is an encouragement also in that no matter how much I mess up and sin against the Lord, the Lord is ever ready and faithful to forgive me and cleanse me, when I take responsibility completely for my sin. I want to be a man after God's own heart, what about you?
From my little corner to yours...