King David and God - And Us Too! Part I
God’s relationship with King David of the Old Testament has always fascinated me. What made David so special to God? For one thing, from an early age, David often did the right thing. However, just as often David made his share of wrong choices. Yet, God and David stayed close “buddies.”
What did God see in David that others did not see? David was a real human being, and he loved being human. He loved to be creative, in song, in dance, in dining and in the praising of his God. To demonstrate his love, David wrote the psalms with amazing intensity, mixed with a revealing transparency. In each created psalm, God knew how David felt, loved, messed up, and how much he needed Him.
Sirach comments: “With his every deed, David offered thanks to God most High in words of praise. With his whole heart he loved his maker and daily had his praises sung.”
Deep in his heart David knew he owed everything he had to his maker, but he also realized he was weak, vulnerable, and not always faithful to that same God. Yet, David continuously yearned to be honest by giving his best efforts, despite the fact that his passions often overwhelmed him.
David’s Prayer and Service
Again, the Book of Sirach notes, “He (David) added beauty to the feasts and solemnized the seasons of the year with music before the altar, providing sweet melody for the psalms.” Or when “David girt with a linen apron, came dancing before the Lord with abandon, as he and all the house of the Lord were bringing up the Ark of the Lord with shouts of joy to the sound of the horn.”
Could it be that David’s enthusiasm and vigor for prayer, pleased God so much? Once as David was blessing the Ark of the Covenant and praising the Lord, he then blessed the people. Samuel writes: “Once he (David) blessed the people in the name of the Lord of hosts, he then distributed among all the people, to each man and woman in the entire multitude of Israel, a loaf of bread, a cut of roast meat, and a raisin cake. With these, all the people left for their homes.”
David loved prayer, and was creative about how to do it, but after prayer, he did what God asked we all do in prayer – take care of others. David showed that prayer needed action. Good deeds give prayer its breath. After all, didn’t Jesus later also feed the five thousand He was teaching on the mountainside?
Yet David never forgot the people he served in the Lord’s name, and he always remembered his origins. David knew that prayer meant serving the Lord’s chosen people. He understood that leadership was not about rank, but about service. David understood this message and tried to live it always. The Lord certainly had to love this quality in David. Later at His last supper, Jesus would also vividly demonstrate this same message.
Once in a discussion with the Pharisees, Jesus recalled how David was marching with his troops and they were famished. David told them to eat the only food available, the food reserved for the temple priests. David once again showed how taking care of others is the hands of prayer. Jesus praised David for this action in His later preaching when He noted that the others we serve are our brothers, fathers, sisters, and mothers. God always appreciates it when we get His son’s message correct!
Next Week: King David and God – And Us Too! Part II