Reading scripture is (or should be) like holding up a mirror up to your own heart. It’s been said of scripture that you should not merely read it but let it read you. In reading through 1 and 2 Samuel of late, this very thing has been on my mind. Reflected in the lives of Saul and David is my own heart, my own life.
Reading over King Saul’s actions and life were too familiar in so many ways. From his, what can only be described as arbitrary hatred, anger and frustration, to his temporary, false repentance that quickly returned to the former state, I too often see these characteristics in my own life. If my days don’t go as planned or I’m inconvenienced by the myriad number of things that come up in the normal grind, if my heart isn’t prepared, isn’t resting in the Lord and His grace and forgiveness, how quickly I become Saul! Rash, arrogant, edgy (not in the trendy way), boastful, quick to anger, not producing the righteousness of God.
Then reading on, I look to David, the man after God’s own heart, whose kingdom God would establish forever. Look to him as an example, right? Do as David did! Problem is, David failed miserably, at the peak of his prosperity at that. And the consequences were awful. Sure I can imitate the things David did well (praying the Psalms is a starter), but David was fallible, prone to wander, just as Solomon in all his glory was as well.
Thank God for a perfect, permanent King who reigns forever, who entered into the humiliation of His wayward subjects, becoming the Chief Servant unto us, in order that we may be restored to His favor and glory. Thank God that because of His perfect sacrifice, work, redemption, resurrection, and forever reign, we can be brought near and perfectly accepted, in order that we can now turn everyday from our wandering ways and enjoy His face shining upon us because of His good favor. Praise God for His Son, who though a King, became like us, in order that we may become like Him, united to Him forever in the enjoyment of His presence. Praise God for His Spirit who resurrects dead hearts, draws in gentleness and grace out from the wilderness of sin and death, to the house of Zion. What a hope.