Perspective

In hindsight it is often (not always) easier to understand why and how things that happen in life can be used by the LORD to accomplish his plan for us. The problem is that it is hard to see how present challenging circumstances can be used for good at all!

I found the following words of God to David describing this reality when he said in 2 Sam. 7:8-9, “Now, therefore, thus you shall say to my servant David, ‘Thus says the LORD of hosts, I took you from the pasture, from following the sheep, that you should be prince over my people Israel. And I have been with you wherever you went and have cut off all your enemies from before you. And I will make for you a great name, like the name of the great ones of the earth.”

At this time in David’s life he is the king of Israel. He is experiencing all the privileges that position holds. He is prosperous and God has given him rest from war because he has made peace with his enemies.

The problem with this story is that there are huge gaps in the life of David from being a shepherd to being king. It is easy to forget all that David had been through to get him to this point in his life. It certainly was not an easy journey for David to move from a simple shepherd to the king of all Israel.

We wish God would move us from one situation to another without the experience of any drama, problems or difficulties. Instead, God put David through many challenging circumstances which he used to grow his character and mature him to the point that he was ready to lead the nation of Israel as king.

If you recall, David was constantly running from Saul who was trying to kill him. David became so discouraged from fleeing and hiding that he decided to live with the Philistines to escape from Saul. He also endured the destruction of the city in which he lived and the capture of all the women and children of his men including his own family. He even endured the rage of his own men who were so mad at the loss of their family members that they wanted to kill him!

From God’s perspective, he was with David all the time and he was taking care of him and leading him, but from David’s perspective, there were some real challenges. Life was hard!  In hindsight all these issues were part of God’s plan to mature David and get him ready to rule as the king of Israel. David needed to learn trust and dependence upon God regardless of circumstances.

Father, thank you for the example of how you worked in the life of David! Help me to remember that you are with me and you are constantly leading me even when circumstances seem very hard. Help me to remember that you can use all of the events of my life (including present circumstances) for good as a whole (Rom. 8:28-29) and help me to be faithful to you in spite of my circumstances. Help me to trust and depend upon your leadership.

Following Jesus with you,

Jeff

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