Extraordinary Minus God Equals Failure
Put false ways far from me and graciously teach me your law! I have chosen the way of faithfulness; I set your rules before me. I cling to your testimonies, O Lord; let me not be put to shame! I will run in the way of Your commandments when you enlarge my heart. — Psalm 119:29-32
Aren’t you glad that God’s Word doesn’t picture the lives of Bible saints like some glossy retouched photos? God portrays people just as they were. They faced the same type of problems and responded in similar ways as we do.
Now, it’s easy to tell you how ordinary David was when he was just a shepherd growing up on the family farm. Although he was a great man of faith, the fact is he was just an ordinary guy. He spiraled fast when he stepped away from the extraordinary—found in his relationship with God.
If you find yourself thinking, “Man, if David—the man who loved God so much—could walk away from God’s path, then anyone can.” Ding. That’s the right answer. Anyone can. Apart from God’s extraordinary resources, we all become so ordinary, so fast.
Prosperous times produce passive wills. This is where David got off track. “In the spring of the year, the time when kings go out to battle, David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel” (2 Samuel 11:1). The text doesn’t tell us why David stayed in Jerusalem. Few of us can handle the temptation of inactivity. In our passivity, we wander around and start thinking, “Do I like my life? Do I like my wife? Do I like my house? Would I be happier in a different house or with a different wife or in another life?”
So these are ordinary temptations. What’s the remedy? Be proactive in your walk with God. Seek after God with all your heart. None of us can afford to be casual or indifferent about our walk with the Lord.
The crises of life reveal what’s been happening for a long time. While it may appear that David drove over a cliff in about six minutes, he didn’t. He made a lot of bad choices over a long period of time. He allowed his heart to become casual, passive, and indifferent, and as a result, he became vulnerable to a moral fall.
Protect your life today, do the right thing even if you don’t feel like it. Seek after God with all your heart and you will find Him. —James MacDonald
Prayer: Father, it’s so obvious that I am quite an ordinary sinner when I look at my life. It’s comforting and convicting to know that a “man after God’s heart” can fall so far. Help me to see areas of my life where I am prone to fall. Forgive me when I do, and help me get back in line with Your will for my life. In Jesus’ name, Amen.