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Facing Failure and Discipline

2 Samuel 12:20
So David arose from the ground, washed and anointed himself, and changed his clothes; and he went into the house of the Lord and worshiped. Then he went to his own house; and when he requested, they set food before him, and he ate.

(Jayme gave me some insight into this passage already today - she did her devotions before me this morning. Her thoughts have added a lot to my own application of this passage.)

Because of David's sin with Bathsheba. God's judgement and discpline was measured out to David. It almost appears to be flat justice - the child concieved in adultery by David and Bathsheba would die as a price for Uriah's life. But it's how David respons that is very interesting.

When confronted by Nathan with his sin, David immediately took responsibility. Because he did so his own life would not be required for Uriah's, but the life of his child would be (v. 13,14). (Note, Bathsheba is referred to as Uriah's wife until this child concieved in adultery has died.) It says that David pleaded with God for the life of his child. His servants were even afraid to to tell him of the child's death because of the desperate way he contended for God to be gracious in the situation and to spare the child's life. the response they recievved from David was not only unexpected, but confusing. for instead of going off the deep end, David ceased his contenting and grieving, and immediately moved on.

I think there are some lessons about enduring a season of God's discipline here. First, that instead of just "taking your swats," it is acceptable to show your sorrowful repentance by contending for God to reverse His course of action. I wonder if a true measure of our repentance is really the sorrow that we feel for our wrongdoing and it's effect on those around us.

But the other lesson has to do with how we respond when the discipline is over. do we whine and carry on about how difficult and unfair it has been? Or do we dust ourselves off and get going again? the first thing David did was to clean himself off, and begin to worship. Instead of asking God why He did what He did, he chose to aknowledge God's goodness to change him. When it all is said and done, God can be trusted. We don't have to live in our failure forever. Worship keeps sorrow from fermenting into ander and bitterness.

Lord, I don't want to live in the failure of my past. I will aknowledge it, learn from it, and move into the future in worship.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on May 27, 2003 12:00 AM.

The previous post in this blog was Church "Planting".

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