Have you ever thought about David’s mother (King David from the Bible) and what a strong woman she must have been?
“Hey mom! you’ll never guess what happened while I was watching the sheep last night! A hungry bear crept through the fog after one of father’s sheep, but I let him have it!” And another morning at breakfast, “Mom, one of the little lambs didn’t make it to the fold, so I began searching for it. I could hear it bleating as I approached a shallow cavern. When I peered over, I saw a lion ready to pounce. He did not stand a chance against my club!”
I wonder if she ever said anything like, “Jesse, Out of all our sons, you’re sending the youngest to watch the sheep tonight?”
How did she handle Jesse sending little David to the front lines to see how his older brothers were doing? Especially when he returns and announced: “Mom, you’ll never guess what!! While King Saul, Eliab, Abinadab, and Shimea stood shaking from the taunts of the giant Goliath, I started picking up rocks to hurl at him. No way was I going to stand idly by and let him talk about my God that way” (1 Samuel 17).
What made David different? What made him a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14)?
The Bible refers to David as a youth at the time of Goliath’s slaying. Since he wasn’t fighting with Saul’s army, he must have been under 20 years of age, and since he’s the youngest of 8 sons, and the 3 older ones are in Saul’s army, he’s probably 15 or less.
So, this youth proceeds to announce to King Saul that the pagan Philistine has defied the armies of the living God, and the LORD who rescued him from the claws of the lion and the bear will rescue him from this Philistine (1 Samuel 17:36-37). Where did David acquire such confidence at a young age? What made him stand out from all the rest?
What was David doing all those years while watching his father’s sheep? Perhaps he was playing on his iPad or talking on the phone with a friend, maybe watching videos or listening to the radio, possibly kicking a soccer ball around. And while none of these things in and of themselves are sinful, we know he wasn’t doing any of those activities.
Years later, while in the rugged wilderness on the run from King Saul, he writes Psalm 63: “O God, You are my God; I shall seek you earnestly” (verse 1a, NASB).
I suspect David simply talked with his God those many years watching his father’s sheep, forming a mental picture of Who God was, and celebrating the relationship he had come to rely upon. David wasn’t alone with the sheep because, as he considered and meditated on his creator God, he experienced the presence of God. David was alone with God while watching sheep, undergoing training to become King!
“For You have been my help, And in the shadow of Your wings I sing for joy. My soul clings to You; Your right hand upholds me” (Psalm 63:7-8).
In The Pursuit of God, A. W. Tozer writes,
“. . . our lack of holy desire. Complacency is a deadly foe of all spiritual growth. Acute desire must be present or there will be no manifestation of Christ to His people. He waits to be wanted. Too bad that with many of us He waits so long, so very long, in vain.”
How could David kill giants? David had an “acute desire” to spend time alone with his God!
“. . . I have seen You . . . to see Your power and Your glory Because your lovingkindness is better than life” (Psalm 63:2-3a).
Don’t waste another minute! Get alone with God and start pondering His greatness! (Psalm 63 is a good starting place!)
If David had a living mother, she learned to trust God with her children. And by the time this 8th son came along, she had plenty of practice!
For me, as a young mother of three, I worried anxiously, allowing my mind to grow imaginary fears. It’s like those memory foam mattresses that come in a flat box and when you spread them out they grow so big there is no getting them back in the box should you want to return it! But the Lord saw fit to give me plenty of practice in training my mind not to go places it has no business going! So, whether it’s worrying about my children or allowing ill-will or sinful desires to remain in my thoughts, as soon as they appear, I have learned to dismiss them at the door and not welcome them in (2 Corinthians 10:5).
My God is so great, and so good, He deserves to have my mind meditating on Him and not wasting it on worry!
Weapon of Choice – “divinely powerful” (2 Corinthians 10:4)
“for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses.”
What is your weapon of choice?