11 Teach me your way, Lord,
that I may rely on your faithfulness;
give me an undivided heart,
that I may fear your name.
12 I will praise you, Lord my God, with all my heart;
I will glorify your name forever.
13 For great is your love toward me;
you have delivered me from the depths,
from the realm of the dead.
David. What am I supposed to do with David? He doesn’t fit in with my perception of God’s favorites at all, not that God plays favorites, but David was definitely someone special. It’s the infidelity that does it for me. The whole Bathsheba thing. And the murdering of her husband, covert-opt style by sending him on the front lines. David’s a shepherd, then a harpist, then a giant-slayer, then a king. Up, up, and away in life. And then he becomes an adulterer. Yet he’s the one we’re supposed to look to for how to form a good relationship with God. We sing the Psalms with hearts at-the-ready. And that’s what brings me back to him, despite his history and proclivities. He really was a pro at talking to God. In good times and in bad, he talked it out. He never assumed radio-silence. I bet he was probably an auditory learner.
David hit the mark when it came to prayers. Perhaps that’s why we come back to him so often to say and sing his words. He knew what it meant to feel isolated and loved, adored and hunted, king and boy. And he prayed his way through all of it. I’m good with the positives, the upswings, but not so great when the pendulum swings. I get teen-girl moody on Jesus, which would be fine if I stomped and yelled and pulled the full drama queen. But I sulk and slam the door. Radio-silence.
C.S. Lewis knew how important it is for us to pray through each upswing and down, to give each moment of every day over. In Mere Christianity, he wrote,
“The real problem of the Christian life comes where people do not usually look for it. It comes the very moment you wake up each morning. All your wishes and hopes for the day rush at you like wild animals. And the first job each morning consists simply in shoving them all back; in listening to that other voice, taking that other point of view, letting that other larger, stronger, quieter life come flowing in. And so on, all day. Standing back from all your natural fussings and frettings; coming in out of the wind….from those moments the new sort of life will be spreading through our system…It is the difference between paint, which is merely laid on the surface, and a dye or stain which soaks right through.”
David was dyed through. He let his faith bleed in to every corner of his being, not tie-dyed with bits of himself still spiraling out, but fully and completely. He didn’t get it right. Bathsheba. But he kept at it. Praying day and night. It’s why I try to get up in the morning and hand over all the pieces of pieces of me–to be stained until they shine from something other than me. To quote David, and C.S. Lewis, and Leonard Cohen, “hallelujah.”
Sunday Thoughts Link Up!
It’s time for another Sunday Thoughts Link-Up! I know there are many out there with wisdom that could encourage all of us. As long as it’s Biblically-based, I’d love for you to join up and then read and comment on what others have shared. Please also leave a comment here. Think of this as a Sunday morning community group that comes to you. And grab the button if you like…