MONDAY, MAY 6
“When King David came to Bahurim, there came out a man of the family of the house of Saul, whose name was Shimei, the son of Gera, and as he came he cursed continually. And he threw stones at David and at all the servants of King David, and all the people and all the mighty men were on his right hand and on his left. And Shimei said as he cursed, ‘Get out, get out, you man of blood, you worthless man! The Lord has avenged on you all the blood of the house of Saul, in whose place you have reigned, and the Lord has given the kingdom into the hand of your son Absalom. See, your evil is on you, for you are a man of blood.’”
2 Samuel 16:5-8 (ESV)
Michael Yaconelli, co-founder of the Christian Publishing Company, “Youth Specialties,” wrote the following in his book, Messy Spirituality, “For a period of time, we were lucky enough to have a housekeeper. She would come in once a week to dust, vacuum, and clean every little out-of-the-way corner of our house. I dreaded the day she came, because my wife and I would spend all morning cleaning the house for the housekeeper! We didn’t want the house to be dirty, or what would the housekeeper think?!
We act the same way with God. We talk ourselves out of coming to God as we are. Instead, we decide to wait until we are ready to come to God. We decide that the way we lived yesterday, last week, or last year makes us “damaged goods” and until we start “living right” we’re not “God material.” Some of us actually believe that until we choose the correct way to live, we aren’t choosable, that until we clean up the mess, Jesus won’t have anything to do with us. The opposite is true. Until we admit we’re a mess, Jesus won’t have anything to do with us. (Messy Spirituality)
The Bible isn’t afraid to show us the messy side of some of the greatest people of faith in the Bible. David is called “a man after God’s own heart,” yet part of the mess in 2 Samuel 16 is the fallout of David having an affair, multiple wives, playing favorites, rape, incest, murder and inaction on David’s part. David had been forgiven by God but there were still consequences to live with. In 2 Samuel 16 David has learned earlier in the day that his Son Absalom has violently overtaken his throne and David is now literally running for his life. He’s travelled almost 15 miles by foot and now Shimei comes out and attacks him verbally and physically. This was probably one of the worst days of David’s life and now a random guy comes out and piles on the mess.
Doesn’t that seem typical of life? Just when you think things can’t get worse and here comes some random attacker making it worse. Have you felt attacked recently? Maybe you’ve felt attacked by family or people who you thought were your friends. Maybe it was coworkers who were supposed to be on your same team? This week we will review some of the lessons on forgiveness from Pastor Mike’s sermon from Sunday. To dig a little deeper today read all of 2 Samuel 16 and ask God to help you see where your life’s mess fits into this story of forgiveness and how God wants you to respond.