A man after God’s own heart…
There is no better place to go than the story of David to understand the relationship between man and God. As one of the greatest heroes of the Old Testament, David the youngest son of Jesse was anointed by God through Samuel, not because of his stature or political talents, but on the basis of his heart.
While David acknowledged in this Psalm (51) that he was sinful from the moment of his conception, he doesn’t blame anyone else for his sins like King Saul did (see 1 Samuel 15:24 and TLSB note). Instead, King David, by the grace of God, acknowledged his sin as his sin and cast himself on God’s promised mercy and forgiveness (which was immediately proclaimed to King David by his pastor, Nathan. 2 Sm 12:13). What good news it is that, because of Jesus’ payment for our sins through His death and resurrection, we are assured by God that “a broken and contrite heart [He] will not despise”, instead, He will “create in [us] a new heart…and renew a right spirit within [us]”! ~ Pr. Kurt A. Van Fossan, The Path of Redemption
After a great deal of experience, and the study thereof, I have reached the conclusion that the grist essence of this Play of Life is found in 3 Primary Characters (God, Self, Satan) in 3 Acts (The Garden, The Offer, The Close). Everything else is noise and distraction my friend.
Like David, I grew up in the Garden of knowing, loving, and wanting to please the Father. My natural default was no different when I was younger than it is today. Love, Honor, Courage, Integrity, and Obedience have always been the bearings I’ve tried to chart my course by. When I veered, and I veered often enough, I was aware of the something holding me back…trying to correct. While we are separated by thousands of years from the original Garden, the characters remain the same. Whether the garden of our youth is a warzone in Kirkuk, or the pasture of privilege in Bellaire; it is only God, Self, and Satan. Everything else is prop and scenery.
If we’re lucky, we grow up in a garden knowing that God is the foundation as the creator of heaven and earth. Sadly, my generation and those before it were far luckier than the present one and those who will inhabit the future we’ve designed for them. In the Garden of “We Three”, if it is “in His light that we see light” and His light is taken from me, then where shall I (Self) turn…but to the dark?
As we move from the Garden to the Offer, I’m reminded of a book I’m in the middle of called, The Story of Reality by Gregory Koukl. He breaks down the same play into 4 acts; Creation, The Fall, Redemption, and Restoration. To my mind, there would be no Fall without the Offer. Without the Fall, no need for Redemption…and so on. For Eve in the original Fall, it was the apple (knowledge). For David and myself….
Our faith was strong but we needed proof We saw her bathing on the roof Her beauty in the moonlight overthrew us…Hallelujah
I know what your thinking. You know people who haven’t taken the Fall. To that I say, we ALL pay one Piper or another…and there are only two. Some of us were late bloomers, and some of us are late Fallers. Vince Foster and James Comey were honorable men well into adulthood…until they found themselves in the Clintonian Orbit…which brings us to the Close. David and I were extremely fortunate in that we both had a Nathan in our lives at just the right moment to guide us to Close and seal the deal through the door of redemption. The ONLY hope for restoration. For David it was the story of the rich man, poor man, and a goat. For me it was understanding how to love through the heart of God and the forging fires of moral courage…instead of my own wanting heart.
It is demoralizing to look out on a world where so many fall and never get up. Satan would appear to have it all locked up…if it were a numbers game. But it ain’t over ‘til the Fat Self sings. And remember, we can have revival without reformation but there can be no reformation without revival of the Self. In your heart you’ve always known. Pray, fast, and tune out the noise.
For a number of years, I’ve been waiting for you to come back home to Me… Hold Me now in your own light, forget the night, it’ll be alright, this is your destiny.