Day 22

David’s Lament

from the 1 & 2 Samuel reading plan

2 Samuel 1:1-27, 2 Samuel 2:1-32, Psalm 60, Romans 12:14

BY Rebecca Faires

Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 1:1-27, 2 Samuel 2:1-32, Psalm 60, Romans 12:14

Have you ever watched the 1950s movie, Sunset Boulevard? Norma, an aging Hollywood starlet, longs for a comeback. She’s deluded enough to think that by sheer force of will, she can break back into the business with a new movie. It goes horribly wrong for her, and the movie ends as she descends a staircase, guilty of murder, smiling and waving to the flashes of reporters’ cameras as she’s taken into police custody. Norma couldn’t loosen her vulture-grip on her own fame to see reality.

Now, I’m not usually a wide-eyed crazy lady clawing at the scraps of my imagined life—or am I? Do I try to hold onto things that are gone and out of my control? Do I secretly attempt to force God to do my bidding? I suspect that because of our sin nature, we all try to control our own circumstances, instead of trusting God to go to bat for us.

The aging starlet reminds me of King Saul. While Saul was still in power, Samuel anointed David as God’s choice for king (1 Samuel 16:1). Instead of gracefully stepping down, Saul raged on, fighting for years against both David and the will of God.

Look at the story from David’s perspective. He was the youngest and the least impressive of all his brothers. Although Samuel did have a small family ceremony after he anointed him, not much changed right away for David. He was still the little brother who had to tend the sheep.

But one very significant thing did change immediately: the Spirit of the Lord came upon David and departed from Saul, who was then plagued by an evil spirit (1 Samuel 16:14). Although David didn’t actually assume the throne for years after he was anointed, the Spirit of the Lord was with him. That was more valuable than 10,000 thrones. While Saul scraped and grasped to keep control of his kingdom, David waited on God’s timing and spent the years learning to listen to the Lord.

Despite the Lord’s clear choice of David as king over Israel, Saul was unwilling to give up the kingdom. He knew David would be king, but he was unable to let go of his delusion of power before his death.

David didn’t have to scramble and fight for the crown. The Lord chose him; He gave David the throne (2 Samuel 2). David didn’t have to take matters into his own hands. God had everything under control, and He still does. His faithfulness frees us to be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer. Like David, we are free to bless, and not curse, those who would seek to harm us (Romans 12:12,14).

We don’t have to claw, hustle, and scratch to make things happen in our lives. God is still sovereign. In spite of all Saul’s labors, his day was over as David’s was ready to begin. David waited patiently for the Lord, and we can, too, with confidence. God will defend and protect us.


Post Comments (59)

59 thoughts on "David’s Lament"

    1. Mel says:

      Hey girl! I’m a week behind and just saw your greeting :) how are you doing?

  1. Kristi says:

    I came across this article today and had to share! It talks specifically about David’s wait to become king and ties in well with the devotional too. It is a quick read so if you have a few minutes to spare, I would definitely recommend reading it!

    1. truthseeker says:

      Yes! This is an excellent article – thank you for sharing.

    2. Carol says:

      Great connection! Also the website in general is awesome! Thank you for sharing!

    3. Kari says:

      Thank you Kristi!! This was my read for this morning since the new one isn’t up on SRT yet! Thank you for sharing this! What a strong message.

    4. Chelsea says:

      Loved it! Thanks!!

    5. Pamela says:

      Thank you for sharing this page. Very helpful information. I enjoyed the article very much

  2. Sylvia Lemley says:

    How I want to take control of my circumstances right now. In a wheel chair-unable to put my left foot down. Things with my Mother seemly getting out of control- God says “Trust me. I’ve been in charge of the cosmos for eons. Trust me.”

  3. churchmouse says:

    I failed at this just this past weekend. Our daughter is on her honeymoon. Her wonderfully romantic groom made all the arrangements , not even telling her where they were going – his surprise gift. (He did tell her there would be sun and water so she had some idea of what to pack) They desired to keep the destination completely private, telling no one. And I mean no one. He told us in an emergency, they could be reached by email. They truly wanted to just be alone. I get that. I do. And I respected that. Until Paris. And then Barcelona. I thought I had full trust in God until… Oh my I just wanted to know for sure. Our oldest daughter emailed the bridesmaids. And she called their departure airport (no, we didn’t even know the airlines.). The bridesmaids didn’t know. The airport had confidentiality rules. My husband texted the best man. He didn’t know. Yes, we went a little crazy. The best man reached out to the groom. We received a text from our daughter and then separately from our son in law: “We are safe and not in Europe.” Sigh of relief! And I read today’s devotion and feel like I failed a test of my faith. “David didn’t take matters into his own hands. God had everything under control, and He still does.” Our daughter and her wonderful husband are both strong Christians. Their eternal destiny is secure. There is nothing better than heaven. I know, no matter what, I would see them again. And yet… I panicked. And I tried to get some control. I’m an older Christian, years of faith under my belt, and still… I’m all too human. Lord, help me. Yet again, help me to trust in You.

    1. Elle says:

      Maybe, you didn’t fail a test at all… maybe, our gracious Father gave you a lesson and also a lovely testimony that even when you are mature you can still have new lessons to learn and that he IS a wonderful counselor. I am blessed by your sharing. Thank you. Praying for blessings to multiply back to you.

    2. Melinda says:

      I FEEL you, Churchmouse. My daughter got married in and LIVES in the Middle East! (25-year old missionary in Turkey). God bless you for your transparency; its encouragement to us all. Faith is a tricky thing when it comes to our loved ones and their safety. I’ve learned that NO PLACE is safe on this earth. And that because our days are numbered, we can relax in that. Easy? No. Learned? Yes. Because real spirituality takes a lifetime of obedience resulting in strong character which is our greatest defense against fear and the temptation to go before God. I fail and fall at this often. Like David. But, like David, I’m forgiven and so are you:)

  4. Cheryl Anne Sedler says:

    Very very good point. You made me think, glad I was listening, because your post saved me a lot of grief today. Examining my heart and intentions was so good, released the things I was grasping. Let Go and let YHWH. Cliche’ I know, but true. Shalom

  5. Marytony says:

    Something that I have been pondering for a couple of days is how David honored Saul even to the last moment. But more than that, also God did not allow David to participate in any way on Saul’s death, since David was not part of the battle in which Saul died.
    On 1 Sam 29, the Philistines prepare to go to battle and David was to join as well (1 Sam29:2), but the commanders where angry and did not want him or his men to fight by their side. So David was sent back to Ziklag.
    When he arrives he finds that the Amalekites have attacked the town and taken all the people with them. So while David is busy taking care of rescuing his family, by God’s instruction (according 1 Sam 30:8), the Philistines are fighting the Israelites. And it is during this battle that Saul and his sons die.
    God took David out of this battle so he wouldn’t take ANY part on the kings’ death. He would be “faultless” before the people when his time to rise as king would come. I love how not only David honored Saul, but God honored David’s heart as well.

    And another tidbit I found on this passage is about David’s heart. The bible says that David had a heart “after God’s own heart”, and we can see that in this passage, David laments not only his friend’s death (Jonathan), but his enemy’s (Saul) as well. It reminded me of how God loves as all, not only when we are his friends, but he loved us even when we were his enemies (Romans 5:10).

  6. Sarah Buchanan says:

    This is one hard concept to grasp. After graduating college in May full of ambitions and certain God had a big crazy plan for my life I sit on my couch and still wonder if I’m heading in the right direction, if there is something I can do to get the ball rolling, if God still has crazy big things in mind for me. The mundane of my career, married life, and serving in church ministry have blinded me from the underlying plan God must have in place. Oh how I desire to trust and be satisfied that this season of being the little brother taking care of the sheep will prepare me for the moment He calls on His anointed to take her place and serve Him.

    1. Emily B. says:

      Maybe the mundane things, as you called them, ARE part of the underlying plan. You can serve God right where you are and right in whatever it is you’re doing now.

    2. Lizzieb85 says:

      A few years ago I had a miscarriage (my first pregnancy). God told us to wait until trying again. Those 2 years were so very hard. Nothing was happening– on the outside. But that time was a very very important time for my spiritual growth. When we felt led to start our family, I got pregnant with twins! Then I took on major ministry positions while pregnant. And our life has been full speed since!! Take this time to just Be. Be with Him. Be with your husband. And then be ready for when God says “Go!”

      1. Maria says:

        Thank you for writing this today. I really needed to hear it.

    3. truthseeker says:

      Oswald Chambers mentions in quite a few of his devotions that the mundane things of this life are the most challenging times to remain faithful in waiting for Gods timing and that they are the times of spiritual growth. ◄ Psalm 46:10 ►
      New International Version
      He says, “Be still, and know that I am God”
      Being still is so very hard for us to do.

    4. Allison says:

      I had this friend once. Her name was Kara. She was a stay at home mom friend of mine in my early years of learning that life. She helped me grow in joy of the little things simply by watching her and chatting about the little things. As the years and miles separated us, we would email to keep in touch, but she also kept a blog called Mundane Faithfullness, and it helped many see how even in the little, especially in the little things of life, we are doing the greatest things! So any time I hear the word mundane, I think of her. Sarah, the mundane, is just that mundane. But it doesn’t mean those things are pointless or worthless. In fact, taking joy in the little things might even make the big things that much sweeter!

    5. Kristen Clegs says:

      A quotation I’ve been pondering:
      “God will give you a place to inhabit which means that you get to become attentive to that which is there where you are. This means that to dwell knowledgeably and hospitable in and towards the place God gives you is to glorify Him. God will give you a few things that He intends for you to do in your inhabited place and with these people. To do what God gives you to do is to strengthen the common good and to glorify God.”

      My own experience, and that of many others, is that God rarely entrusts something “crazy big” to a child of His until after they have been faithful in the little, the mundane, the lonely, the desert, and faithful to the few and the unseen. Love the person right in front of you well. That is always God’s will.

  7. Sarah says:

    Letting go and letting God have control is one of the hardest things I’ve had to learn and relearn and relearn..sigh. I’m an ‘A’ personality and letting go comes hard for me. I needed to hear this today also, Emily, there is a lot going on in my life right now and I was getting impatient. This soothed my stormy mind and reminded me what I already know but struggle with, God has this and eventually it will be handled and handled much better than I ever would be able to do. I hope it doesn’t take years but if it does then I can just go back and read about Saul and David for a reminder. The best thing I can do is get on with what He asks of us and that is to spread the word of salvation then I don’t have so much time for self.

    1. Annette says:

      Letting go has been my biggest struggle in my life recently. So encouraged to know that I’m not the only one. This devotion was exactly what I needed today. I need to remember that God is in control and everything comes in His time.

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