Today’s Reading: 2 Samuel 13 – 18; Psalm 3, 58 & 63
David thought he could have Uriah killed and no one would notice, no one would care. But God cared! God cared about Uriah and God cared about the choices David was making. God loved David enough that He desired to find a way to bring David back to Himself and continue to bless David. God desires the same for us when we fall away from Him.
GOD CARES WHEN WE CHOOSE SIN AND DEVALUE LIFE
All of us must die eventually. Our lives are like water spilled out on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again. But God does not just sweep life away; instead, he devises ways to bring us back when we have been separated from him. – 2 Samuel 14:14
These are the words of a woman from Tekoa who was known for her wisdom. Joab sent her to David at a time when he needed a reminder of how God had forgiven him. His son Absalom had killed his half-brother Amnon for raping their sister, Tamar (2 Samuel 13). Although, Absalom had good reason to administer justice, David became very angry and refused to forgive his son.
In response to Tekoa’s words and the request of Joab, David chose to extend grace to Absalom by letting him return to Jerusalem but he continued to ban his son from his presence. Even when Absalom rebelled against David and tried to take the kingdom from him, the change in David’s heart was evidenced in these words to Joab: “For my sake, deal gently with young Absalom” (2 Sam. 18:5).
When Absalom was killed in battle, Joab knew this would not be good news for David, even though Absalom had been so disloyal to his father (2 Sam. 18:20). At the news of Absalom’s death, David cried, “O my son Absalom! My son, my son Absalom! If only I had died instead of you! O Absalom, my son, my son.” – (18:33)
THE GOD OF MERCY IS WILLING TO FORGIVE AND CAN HELP US FORGIVE OTHERS
The way in which God loves us and values each life changed David and it can change us too. Perhaps we have good reason to stay angry or refuse to forgive someone, but we must remember that we also have sinned against God, yet he loves us enough to continue to draw us to Him. The God we have sinned against still wants a personal relationship with us. If God is willing to forgive us, will we allow him to do a miracle in our hearts, giving us the strength to forgive others?
The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. – 2 Peter 3:9
Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. – Luke 6:37
Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. – Ephesians 4:31-32
GOD DOES NOT JUST SWEEP LIFE AWAY
When I was a teenager, I asked God to break my heart at what breaks His. I believe in response to that prayer, God called me to the pro-life ministry. I believe it breaks the heart of God when the lives of the unborn are devalued. I also read the above scriptures and know in my heart that God loves the mothers and fathers who have chosen abortion. He loves them enough to want them to come to repentance so that He can forgive them and restore them.
If you are in need of forgiveness today, know that your Savior loves you. Know that God is not done with you, He does not just sweep your life away. As He loved David, He loves you! As He forgave David, He wants to forgive you. He has not given up on you but continues to devise ways to draw you back to Him. Perhaps today is the day to stop resisting His pull and allow God to change your heart as He changed the heart of David.
GIVE US A HEART OF FORGIVENESS, OH LORD
If you are in need of forgiving someone else today, know that Almighty God has the power to do a work in your heart – even what seems impossible. Just as God wants to forgive you, He wants you to let go of the hurt and pain, forgiving others for all they have done to you. God does not just sweep life away and neither should we.
But you, O Lord, are a shield around me; you are my glory, the one who holds my head high.
I cried out to the Lord, and he answered me from his holy mountain.
I lay down and slept, yet I woke up in safety, for the Lord was watching over me. – Psalm 3:3-5
O God, you are my God; I earnestly search for you.
My soul thirsts for you; my whole body longs for you in this parched and weary land where there is no water.
I have seen you in your sanctuary and gazed upon your power and glory.
Your unfailing love is better than life itself; how I praise you!
I will praise you as long as I live, lifting up my hands to you in prayer.
You satisfy me more than the richest feast.
I will praise you with songs of joy.
I lie awake thinking of you, meditating on you through the night.
Because you are my helper, I sing for joy in the shadow of your wings.
I cling to you; your strong right hand holds me securely. – Psalm 63:1-8
If you have an abortion in your past, please consider taking a weekend to go DEEPER STILL in your healing from that decision. Follow this link to learn more about the upcoming retreat April 28-30th: http://hopeforafuture.com/deeperstill/