When 1 Samuel begins, it is still the period of the judges when everyone is doing whatever they want and generally ruining the country. However, there is the threat of the Philistines coming from the East and suddenly the people want someone to rule over them. But where is their heart? Do they want a king who will study the law and keep the commandments (Deut 17:14-20)? No, they only want a king because all of the other nations have a king (1 Sam 8:5).
So, God appoints Saul as king. But Saul proves to be a failure.
At first Saul ignores God’s call, then disobeys Him. He slooughs off responsibility on others, and offers a sacrifice (something only a priest should do) out of fear. When confronted, he essentially says, “Big deal.” Eventually, the LORD revokes the crown from his head – and Saul doesn’t care that God had left him.
(I hope this has your jaw on the floor.)
Finished with Saul, God sends Samuel to Jesse’s home, a man with eight sons. While he is there, the LORD says to Samuel:
What was it about David’s heart that was different than Saul’s or any one of his brothers’? I think it is simply David’s acknowledgment that God is God and he is not. We see this throughout David’s life.
When facing a giant, David trusts that God is bigger.
When the arch of the covenant returns to Israel, David worships to the point of embarrassment.
He writes prolifically about the wonders and goodness of God in prayers and songs – many which we sing today.
And though he commits atrocious sin, David repents with all of his heart, in sackcloth and ashes, begging God to create in him a clean heart. To forgive him.
David knew who he was. David knew he was a man anointed by God, a recipient of grace.
What about you? Do you know who you are before God? When we are able to recognize ourselves as deeply flawed but fully loved we are made new. As we hold out both our sins and gifts to God, He transforms us.
We can rest in the confidence of God’s provision for us.
No longer is there fear of failure or exhausting perfectionism. God sees it all and loves us.
Gone is shame and regret. Instead we live in love. We live in God.