2 Samuel 19:1-8
19 Joab was told, “The king is weeping and mourning for Absalom.” 2 And for the whole army the victory that day was turned into mourning, because on that day the troops heard it said, “The king is grieving for his son.” 3 The men stole into the city that day as men steal in who are ashamed when they flee from battle. 4 The king covered his face and cried aloud, “O my son Absalom! O Absalom, my son, my son!” 5 Then Joab went into the house to the king and said, “Today you have humiliated all your men, who have just saved your life and the lives of your sons and daughters and the lives of your wives and concubines. 6 You love those who hate you and hate those who love you. You have made it clear today that the commanders and their men mean nothing to you. I see that you would be pleased if Absalom were alive today and all of us were dead. 7 Now go out and encourage your men. I swear by the Lord that if you don’t go out, not a man will be left with you by nightfall. This will be worse for you than all the calamities that have come on you from your youth till now.” 8 So the king got up and took his seat in the gateway. When the men were told, “The king is sitting in the gateway,” they all came before him. Meanwhile, the Israelites had fled to their homes.
Getting your reactions correct can be tricky. Here is a man whose son has died. So he mourns. Correct response right – wrong! Because David was not only a man, he was the king. And while most of us don’t have the role of a king the roles we play in life have bearing on how we react to things. Like when a mum or dad needs to protect a child, yet is injured or fearful, they care first for their child then themselves.
There are times in life for all of that thinking broadly, typically of others, before ourselves is exactly what is needed, even though we may be experiencing something difficult, traumatic or grief. David, temporarily forgot his place. He was the king. He needed to celebrate the victory of his troops – who were slinking into the city because of David’s attitude, so they didn’t get to celebrate until Joab challenged David.
Father help us to remember our places in life and respond in ways that gives life to many in keeping with Your love.
Written by Ps. Richard Botta