When I read my Bible I find that one of the most compelling characters in the book is David. It could be that I'm simply narcissistic and am drawn to the one that shares my name. But I hope that it's deeper than that.

What I love most about his story is that we get everything. The highs. The lows. The times when he has killed a giant and the people sing songs about him. The times when he running for his life and pretending to be insane. When he becomes king of a nation. When he commits adultery and murder (two of the commandments in one go).

Throughout all that we know about him (and we know allot), he is remembered through history as "the man after God's own heart". The man that built an inside out temple of praise when the theology of the day said you only get go into the holy of holies once a year and even then you might die.

How did he get this understanding of God's nature? How did he become the "man after God's heart"? I honestly think it was his time alone in the fields.

Before he was famous, before he was a giant killer or the great musician that could calm Saul's murderous rage he was just a kid out in the field taking care of his father's flocks. Mostly forgotten even by his own family.

His father didn't even bring him in from the field when the prophet came to the house. He was alone out in the wilderness.

Those quiet nights under the stars. Those hot days under the middle eastern sun. All alone with a bunch of smelly sheep. These were the moments that forged his character. These were the times when he prayed to an invisible God and came to know Him like none before him.

I imagine David alone in the fields under a vast and starry sky, singing praises to an unseen God. I imagine tears streaming down his dirty shepard's cheeks as he feels God singing back over Him. David realizing that God delights in him, that God "knit him together in his mother's womb."

How else does a boy get the courage to kill a giant? To stand before kings? He knew who he was as the beloved of God. 

If we all knew who we were...if we could see how God sees us. We would do great things.

But it requires time in the wilderness. Time alone that no one else sees. We shouldn't despise the days of small beginnings because these are the days that make greatness possible.

I dare you to be brave enough to ask God how he sees you. Ask Him what He thinks of you.

I bet it's allot because his own son shed his blood for you.

And once He tells you what He thinks of you...I dare you to believe Him. 

8/6/2013 10:45:44 am

We don't tend to like the wilderness seasons of life, but they are so crucial to preparing us for the call God has on our lives. Even Jesus lived in relative obscurity for 30 years before he was released into ministry - and we get upset when we have to wait a few months. It's the wilderness seasons that grow us. If we understood that, we would embrace those seasons even more. Great post, David!

David Helms
8/8/2013 02:31:28 am

I had a revelation after reading Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis that I was too deep in the minutiae of day to day life when God uses my entire lifetime to prepare me for eternity. That made me much more satisfied in the wilderness seasons. Also Christ spent 40 days in the actual wilderness, reveling in the "This is my Son in whom I am well pleased" announcement that had just occurred.

8/13/2013 12:47:16 pm

How many commandments have you broken at the same time? I think I'm at four. Can you guess which ones?

Not important. I concur- David would not have been the man that he was if it wasn't for his time alone with the sheep. He needed that, which leads me to believe that our own obscurity has its place in shaping us. Know?

8/15/2013 04:16:27 pm

Oh wow! i find this post particularly incredible due to the fact that for the past three weeks, i have been asking myself, wondering really, on how God sees me... I try hard to picure myself in his eyes on what He thinks of me. Especially during times when i feel irrelevant or selfish. I think i've never really had the gut or imagined the possibility of asking Him for fear of the answer. But I will. Coz it matters to me and I matter to Him. :)

David L. Helms
8/20/2013 05:49:38 am

It is scary to ask, isn't it? Because we are so familiar with our own failures we are sure that God would be more so. But i honestly believe that He is less concerned with our failures than we are. He is more concerned with preparing us for eternity where we will be with Him forever!

8/29/2013 05:14:51 pm

Amen to that. preparing us for eternity - the goal.

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