Reposted from Old Paths Journal
Acts 13:20-22 tells us, “And after that he gave unto them judges about the space of four hundred and fifty years, until Samuel the prophet. And afterward they desired a king: and God gave unto them Saul the son of Cis, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, by the space of forty years. And when he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfill all my will.”
God has allowed me to serve as an assistant pastor, a youth pastor, a bus director, and now as the pastor of a church. In every position, unfortunately, I have seen some very talented people become unusable to the Lord. Why is it many talented, charismatic, influential people do not reach their full potential? When you look in the Bible, seemingly Saul was the more talented man between him and David. He was head and shoulders taller, a choice young man, and was the best of the children of Israel at that time according to 1 Samuel 9:2; however, David, the less talented, was picked to be the man after God’s own heart. Allow me to give you a few paragraphs regarding Saul and David in the matter of “The Attitude of a King.”
When I look at Saul and David throughout the Bible, I see a distinct difference between these two men from their appearance, to emotions, and ultimately to their spirituality. There were several character flaws in Samuel’s life that were hidden behind all the looks and talents he possessed. In 1 Samuel 15, Saul showed five character flaws that led to verse 35 stating, “…and the Lord repented that he had made Saul king over Israel.” The first character flaw is found in 1 Samuel 15:9. Saulwas told to utterly destroy everything, however he kept the best animals for himself. His first flaw was that he would not listen. Saul could not reach his highest potential because he had not listened to what his authority had told him to do. His second flaw is found in verse 17, “when thou wast little in thine own sight”. Saul became arrogant and prideful to the point that he thought he could do what he wanted. His third flaw is found in verses 19-20. When Samuel, the Lord’s appointed, tried to correct him, he could not be corrected and argued that he was right in his actions. The last flaw is found in verse 21 when Saul blamed other people for his mistakes. All throughout Saul’s life God would not, and could not use him because of these attitudes.
David was seemingly less talented than Saul, and arguably committed more severe sins (in human eyes) than Saul ever committed, yet he’s a man after God’s own heart? The man who committed murder, adultery, and caused thousands to die because of numbering the people is more fit to be a king than the talented, yet character flawed, Saul? How can this be? One word answer…ATTITUDE. Do you recall David’s attitude in 2 Samuel 12 when Nathan said, “Thou art the man”? Did David argue and fight to prove he was right, or did he give reasons why his actions were acceptable? Absolutely not! He took responsibility and apologized and sought the Lord. You never find Saul doing that one time in Scripture. David may not have been perfect or greatly talented, but he was willing to accept responsibility and humble himself before God, and that is why God greatly used him. God is not necessarily looking for “perfect” teenagers, He just wants teenagers to want to be used by Him and who want to serve Him.
The Bible teaches that everyone will sin. The difference between those who are usable and others who are not usable is their attitude after they sin. Will you humble yourself and ask the Lord’s forgiveness or blame others and argue to justify your actions? I hope that every reader chooses the attitude of a king.