Drama and Conviction

The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.”-Psalm 145:8
In my quest to know the one true God, I happened to find myself in the Old Testament. I read my way through battles, marriages, affairs, assassination attempts and murders. Somewhere around a census and a hanging, David sinned (um, again). He seemed to be sinning a lot, but who am I to judge?

I happen to be quite skilled at judging.
There were consequences:

“When David arose in the morning, the word of the Lord came to the prophet Gad, David’s seer, saying, “Go and speak to David, Thus the Lord says, “I am offering you three things; choose for yourself one of them, which I may do to you.”


So Gad came to David and told him, and said to him, “Shall seven years of famine come to you in your land? Or will you flee three months before your foes while they pursue you? Or shall there be three days pestilence in your land? Now consider and see what answer I shall return to Him who sent me.”

Then David said to Gad, “I am in great distress. Let us now fall into the hand of the Lord for His mercies are great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man.”

So the Lord sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning until the appointed time; and seventy thousand men of the people from Dan to Beersheba died. When the angel stretched out his hand towards Jerusalem to destroy it, the Lord relented from the calamity and said to the angel who destroyed the people, “It is enough! Now Relax your hand!”…” 2 Samuel 24:11-16

I wondered why God was being so mean. These three choices he gave David were…unappealing. That’s why I almost fell over when I read David’s response. It’s been following me around for days now.
“Let us now fall into the hand of the Lord for his mercies are great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man.”
Sometimes, oftentimes, I think I am more merciful than God. The mercy of me. I would never send pestilence, or famine, or war.
That’s a lie.
I’ve been known to maim people over board games. I have kicked in a screen door over a conflict regarding a bunny rabbit. That’s right, a bunny rabbit.
My instinct is to get even, or even better, get ahead!
I forget my nature. I try to rule the world. Do I believe God is good when he gives me hardship?
David did not forget. He knew that God is love and God is just. God is more merciful than man.
“My trials have been fewer than my sins, and when I have kissed the rod it has fallen from thy hands. Thou hast often wiped away my tears, restored peace to my mourning heart, chastened me for my profit. All thy work for me is perfect.” -Valley of Vision
The same God I quickly question and judge, he loves beyond measure. This is mercy:
“and being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” Philippians 2:8

Let me never say that God is unloving. Let me never judge my God by my circumstances.
I see my life, I see the tree, and I remember: He makes all things new.

“For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.” 2 Cor 8:9
No one loves more. God is love.
Amen.
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4 thoughts on “Drama and Conviction

  1. Execellent insight and beautifully written. Thanks for sharing. I'm working my way through the book of Judges right now, and what strikes me is how much our Father is a God of second chances, even in the face of total disobedience.

    Like

  2. Great post. How often I've scoffed at Old Testament repeat offenders … only to examine my own heart and find that I would have been “smote” long ago if not for grace.

    Like

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