Absalom had begun an uprising among the people...
ever working his charm to win their support as king,
rather than his father.
So David headed for the hills,
saying to all the servants with him...
“Arise, and let us flee,
or we shall not escape from Absalom.
Make haste to depart,
lest he overtake us suddenly and bring disaster upon us,
and strike the city with the edge of the sword.”
2 Samuel 15:14 NKJV
And this was certainly not the same David we remember.
The warrior, the conqueror, the king...
the slayer of giants.
And as he climbed higher,
he expressed a myriad of emotions...
fear, mourning, weeping, even worship.
And along the way,
he met those who loved him,
and those who certainly did not.
Now when King David came to Bahurim,
there was a man from the family of the house of Saul,
whose name was Shimei the son of Gera, coming from there.
He came out,
cursing continuously as he came.
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.
2 Samuel 16:5-6 NKJV
And Abishai came to David's defense...
ever the commander,
he longed to settle this score,
even to end this man's life.
But David stopped him.
He allowed Shimei to speak his curses...
even to cast his stones
and kick up the dust at his feet.
David believed it was due him.
Maybe for the grief,
the loss of life,
the lost relationships,
the family torn from his hands.
He had listened for years to the accusations from Absalom
that he was not fit to be judge over Israel.
And now, this man too, wanted to throw stones.
So why not let him?
But this man, Shimei,
attacked him for a wrong
that was no fault of David's.
He was reaching way back into the past
to shout the words he must have muttered under his breath for years.
But David was indeed anointed King to replace Saul.
And Saul was a king undone by himself.
Killed, not by the hand of David,
but by the Philistines...
and David was no where near him at the time.
He even mourned his death,
and honored him with a Psalm.
But people believe...
what people believe.
And they will continue
to throw stones
even at us.
Even if they are wrongfully tossed.
And God will even allow it.
Maybe in this case,
David needed a little reminder.
To stir up something deep inside...
that he was still the king.
And until God anointed another one,
this was still his rightful position.
But David had let fear and feeling
replace his former faith.
He was having a hard time
getting back to that place
of being a warrior,
Ever since the prophet Nathan
convicted him of great sin...
of killing Bathsheba's husband Uriah,
David seemed to have forgotten who he was...
Sure he had sinned.
But he had also confessed
But then it seems he spent his years
constantly on the watch
for the consequences pronounced...
Thus says the Lord:
‘Behold, I will raise up adversity
against you from your own house
2 Samuel 12:11
Rather than aspiring to change,
himself and his sons
to be better men.
David has let life steal his optimism...
and in this season, it seems
he has flat out given up.
And still the man follows...
And as David and his men
went along the road,
Shimei went along
the hillside opposite him
and cursed as he went,
threw stones at him
and kicked up dust.
2 Samuel 16:13
But could there still be a purpose?
These annoying people we cannot seem to shake...
that test our patience,
that step on our very last nerve,
will not let us alone,
even when we are at our weakest,
even when we have flat out given up.
Maybe these stones continually cast
might help remind him of the...
he once picked up.
But just one flung from a sling,
at just the right angle
landed smack between the eyes
of a giant...
had brought him down to the ground,
halting all that taunting
being had done to the Israelites.
Did David begin to remember
who he was?
Maybe the response from Abishi, saying...
Why should this dead dog
curse my lord the king?
might help bring to mind the words...
Am I a dog,
that you come to me with sticks?
of a giant shouting to taunt him,
to goad him,
to tease him,
to belittle him.
Do you wonder...
if somewhere deep down,
as he kept walking
David remembered that day,
who he used to be?
Because I think maybe God allows these people
to straggle along,
just a little bit longer
to remind us of our past,
and bring us to a place
where we remember,
not only who we are, but...
Who He is.
David said to the Philistine,
“You come to me with a sword,
with a spear,
and with a javelin. But
I come to you
in the name of
the Lord of hosts,
the God of the armies of Israel,
whom you have defied.
1 Samuel 17:45
on that day...
David knew who he was.
But more importantly,
Who his God was!
as I watch David in this retreat uphill,
I see myself...
in seasons of life
where I wander,
to and from God.
Where I sense Him with me
and I pray and worship Him.
And life is great.
I completely forget...
and get self-absorbed.
Like... "God who?"
Then my world trembles a bit...
and I look for Him
but cannot find Him.
I do not hear Him,
I do not understand Him.
Back and forth,
up and down.
Just like David,
in seasons of life.
Even though I know,
God is always the same.
It's me that changes.
Word of God,
train me, today...
to never lose sight of You, even in the many seasons of life,
to ever remember who and Whose I am.
my Lord and King.
I bow down to You...
the Lord of hosts,
the God of the armies of Israel.
that even though
I am ever up
and then down...
You never change.
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