A Vision for the World
16 So Paul stood up, and motioning with his hand said: "Men of Israel and you who fear God, listen. 17 The God of this people Israel chose our fathers and made the people great during their stay in the land of Egypt, and with uplifted arm he led them out of it. 18 And for about forty years he put up with them in the wilderness. 19 And after destroying seven nations in the land of Canaan, he gave them their land as an inheritance. 20 All this took about 450 years. And after that he gave them judges until Samuel the prophet. 21 Then they asked for a king, and God gave them Saul the son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, for forty years. 22 And when he had removed him, he raised up David to be their king, of whom he testified and said, 'I have found in David the son of Jesse a man after my heart, who will do all my will.'
I sometimes like to walk through a cemetery and read the epitaphs on the tombstones. It's interesting to see what words are used to sum up a person's life. This may seem like a morbid pastime, but it's actually a great way to reassess our own lives. We're each going to leave a testimony of some kind when we die. Have you ever wondered what your loved ones will write on your gravestone? What words do you want inscribed there?
In our passage today, the apostle Paul tells us God's evaluation of David: He described him as "a man after My heart, who will do all My will" (v. 22). What an awesome testimony of a life well lived! The Lord wasn't describing a perfect man, but one whose life was centred on God's interests and desires.
David's many psalms attest to the fact that his relationship with the Lord was the most important aspect of his life. His passion was to obey God and carry out His will. However, that doesn't mean he was always obedient. Who can forget his failure with Bathsheba? But even when he sinned by committing adultery and murder, his heart was still bent toward God. The conviction he felt and his humble repentance afterward proved that his relationship with the Lord was still his top priority.
If God was writing a summary of your life, how would He describe you? Does your heart align with His, or have you let it follow the pleasures and pursuits of this world? Unless we diligently pursue our relationship with the Lord, we will drift away from Him. Maybe it's time for a course correction.