I am often amazed at David's relationship with our Father God. God said of David, "He is a man after God's own heart."
That He was. To cultivate a relationship with our Heavenly Father such as David maintained, is a treasure!
David drew strength, power, comfort, wisdom, and blessing from an intimate, deep, and abiding relationship with God. He sought the Lord faithfully every step of the way.
David was faithful yet He sinned just like each of us. When David sinned he returned to His loving Father. With a contrite heart he repented and each time God dealt mercifully with David. In spite of everything, God's favour rested on David.
In Chronicles we learn that David numbered the people of Israel. God was displeased with David and He struck Israel.
David said to God, "I have sinned greatly, in that I have done this thing. But now, please take away the iniquity of Thy servant, for I have done very foolishly. I Chronicles 21:8 NASV
The Lord gave David a choice of three punishments for His sin. (Before Christ, there was no atonement for sin, other than through sacrifices and punishment.) Two punishments included David being overtaken by his foes. The third was allowing the sword of the Lord, and pestilence in the land for three days.
David responded, "I am in great distress; please let me fall into the hand of the Lord, for His mercies are very great. But do not let me fall into the hands of men." 1 Chronicles 21:13 NASV
David trusted His Heavenly Father as a God of mercy even when justly dealing punishment for his own wrong-doing. He knew the hearts of men can be merciless and unkind and at best unpredictable. He would not trust this punishment. Instead He turned His heart back to His Father.
David humbled himself before His God. With true repentance and a contrite heart, he sought forgiveness. A contrite heart the Lord will never refuse.
So the Lord did send pestilence on Israel; 70000 men of Israel fell. "And God sent an angel to Jerusalem to destroy it; but as he was about to destroy it, the Lord saw and was sorry over the calamity, and said to the destroying angel, 'It is enough; now relax your hand.'" I Chronicles 21:15 NASV
God's mercies are great. They were to David and they are to us. He does not deal with His children as we deserve.
Throughout the Psalms, and the Old Testament we are witness to David's intimacy with His Father. We can cry out to our Father in our darkest of nights, in oppression, fear, grief, terror quoting the Psalms that David penned. We find comfort, peace, and strength through David's words in the Psalms.
As we read the accounts of David in the Old Testament we see David humble himself again and again before His God. We see Him come boldly and desperately, with a trusting heart to His God and King.
There were times he danced and sang to His God, sometimes mocked by others, even his wife. He was grateful for all He received from His father's hand. Over and over David found favour in God's sight. He pleaded with God at times too. He spoke to God, He listened to God, and He obeyed Him. But David was a man. He was weak and fragile just as we are weak and fragile.
He fell short of the holiness of God. And we do too!
So many times we see account after account of David's intimate relationship with His loving Father. David learned His Father's heart. He knew Him. He sought Him in good times and in bad. Is this why God says, "He was a man after my own heart."?
Father God, we seek You like David did. We cry out to You. We want to know Your heart. We meditate on Your word. We teach it to our children, when we walk by the way, when we eat, and when we sleep. We want to be faithful to love You with all our heart, mind, body, and soul. We give it all to You Lord. Use us Lord. May we learn like David did, to seek that intimate, deep, abiding relationship with You. We love You, Lord.