In His Time
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"Then it came about afterwards that David inquired of the Lord, saying, 'Shall I go up to one of the cities of Judah?' And the Lord said to him, 'Go up.' So David said, 'Where shall I go up?' And He said, 'To Hebron.'  So David went up there, and his two wives also, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess and Abigail the widow of Nabal the Carmelite.  And David brought up his men who were with him, each with his household; and they lived in the cities of Hebron.  Then the men of Judah came and there anointed David king over the house of Judah.
And they told David, saying, 'It was the men of Jabesh-gilead who buried
Saul.'  And David sent messengers to the men of Jabesh-gilead, and said
to them, 'May you be blessed of the Lord because you have shown this kindness
to Saul your lord, and have buried him.  'And now may the Lord show
lovingkindness and truth to you; and I also will show this goodness to
you, because you have done this thing.  'Now therefore, let your hands
be strong, and be valiant; for Saul your lord is dead, and also the house
of Judah has anointed me king over them.'" (NASB)
Have you ever wondered why Christmas Eve goes by so slow and Christmas Day goes by so fast? For me, I've noticed that anticipation elongates time. Looking forward, time crawls; looking back it runs. As David walks into his destiny, I suppose it would be easy for him to look back at the day Samuel took a horn of oil and anointed him as king when he was a young man as if it were yesterday. But it wasn't. David had lived a lot of life since he lived in his father's home and tended to his sheep. He wasn't the same innocent boy who went to the battlefield to check on his brothers. Now he was a seasoned warrior. The battle against Goliath propelled him into prominence in Saul's military and among the general population. One opportunity led to another until David was among the most popular figures in the land. The time between his anointings may have seemed to have flown by quickly looking backward, but I'm sure it crawled by a snail's pace as he waited for Samuel's anointing to be confirmed by the men of Judah.
We often speak of the patience of Job, perhaps we should pause this morning and reflect about the patience of David. I am amazed at his willingness to wait on the Lord to give him the throne in God's time. Maybe it is my own impatience when it comes to waiting, but I am amazed that David could be so patient with God. I'm afraid that I would have been tempted to take matters into my own hands-I'm not sure I could have turned down the opportunities David had to strike Saul down. David was firm in his belief that no one should raise his hand against God's anointed. Not him. Not anybody else. He took God's anointing very seriously. David had the Amalekite killed who assisted Saul in his suicide and in our text today, rewarded the men who buried him after he died.
Whenever we speak of patience, we usually acknowledge that it is an important virtue. A Dutch proverb says, "An ounce of patience is worth a pound of brains" We also note that it is a necessary ingredient for success, American humorist and essayist Arnold Glasow, said: "The key to everything is patience. You get the chicken by hatching the egg -- not by smashing it."
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