Last night as I led a few leaders in a time of sharing about the past year in our lives; a brother talked about how his recent experiences helped him see that there are moments in life when it all boils down to you-and-God. No one else can quite enter your experience, bear the pain or help with understanding. Only One remains present, attending, and able to help.
Yet, it will take us all a while to learn this deep truth that we indeed have a Heavenly Father, a God who offers help, a God who does carry us, a God who will grant wisdom, provide rest and bring healing.
When King Saul's jealousy and possible psychosis got the better of him, he hunted for David like a crazed predator for four years. Naturally, David feared for his life - and fear can make us do many things.
David went to the high priest for help. Later he went to enemy territory to hide. Everywhere David turned, people became implicated and sometimes suffered from the fallout of the conflict between Saul and David.
It looked like the sheer fear for his life was going to layer on with more: grief for what Saul would do to others who are innocent.
In our desperate moments, we will often turn for help - and sometimes, like a drowning man, we cling so tight to anyone or anything that can help; and drown that too.
There is instruction in this.
Equally, the four years David spent running for his life did something for him as all of these things happened. He crafted the Psalms that today reveal what depths a man and his God can get to.
In God alone there is rest for my soulnowhere else
no one else
In God is my safetyNot here
no need to flee
In God is my refuge
for God, ever-Present is.
David of course, eventually becomes the King God has anointed him to be. The dream God inked on his heart will come to pass even if it has to nearly die first. The king God saw fit to stand through a nation's history as king par excellence and as a pre-figure for Christ - that king who will build God's kingdom ways in a people, must know his God to the depths a mortal may be granted to. Yes, much of it came through a cauldron of human suffering we all seek to avoid: fear, threat of death, loneliness, emptiness, defeat, humiliation... But perhaps as John the Baptist would put it a thousand years later, "He must increase, I must decrease". More of God, less of me.
|Christ on the Cross with John the Baptist and King David by |
Schaufelein, Hans Leonard c1480-1539
note: These experiences and insights about God are reocrded in Psalm 62 - lyrics and music for a head Levite named Jeduthun* -one of three chief Levites; whom some deduce may be David's music teacher!