When I was prosperous I said, “Nothing can stop me now!” Your favor, O Lord, made me as secure as a mountain. Then you turned away from me, and I was shattered. I cried out to you, O Lord. I begged the Lord for mercy, saying, “ What will you gain if I die, if I sink down into the grave? Can my dust praise you from the grave? Can it tell the world of your faithfulness? Hear me, Lord, and have mercy on me. Help me, O Lord.” Psalm 30: 6-10 NLT
These verses remind me of King David's own period of contrition when the baby born to his illicit union with Bathsheba was at the point of death. Certainly, David's actions during that time were of the “Nothing can stop me now – not even sinful behavior” variety. David had God's favor. He seemed above the law.
Then he found out differently.
I wonder if his prayer was this one. Or like this one. David was shattered. Surely God would save his baby. Were the prayers for the baby or for David himself? Was David ever filled with shame for his behavior? Did he see this death as a punishment for what he had done? Did he think God would overlook it and have mercy on him (rather than the child)?
I wonder how many times we cry to God and ask for mercy when we are the ones who are lacking in mercy. How often do we cry for help when we should be crying for others? When the baby died, David immediately took a bath and stopped crying to God. This amazed the servants who thought the baby's death would really send him over the edge. Are we as self-centered as King David?
God, we cry to you for help. We thank you for prosperity. But we don't always take responsibility for our own behavior. May we do your will at all times. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Copyright 2011 Amelia G. Sims