God of hope,
you call us home from the exile of selfish oppression
to the freedom of justice,
the balm of healing,
and the joy of sharing.
Make us strong to join you in your holy work,
as friends of strangers and victims,
companions of those whom others shun,
and as the happiness of those whose hearts are broken.
We make our prayer through Jesus Christ our Lord.
2 Samuel 7:18-22
Then King David went in and sat before the Lord and said, “Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house, that you have brought me thus far?19 And yet this was a small thing in your eyes, O Lord God. You have spoken also of your servant’s house for a great while to come, and this is instruction for mankind, O Lord God! 20 And what more can David say to you? For you know your servant, O Lord God! 21 Because of your promise, and according to your own heart, you have brought about all this greatness, to make your servant know it. 22 Therefore you are great, O Lord God. For there is none like you, and there is no God besides you, according to all that we have heard with our ears.
I am the type of guy who if 99 people say I stink and 1 person says I am o.k. I think I am pretty great. At the same time I do hope to be accepted by all those around me, I can’t think of any reason why they wouldn’t want me as a friend, but if they didn’t then I would work hard to fix it, change it, or prove how wrong they were. Notice I said “were” and not “are” because I firmly believe that their minds or attitudes toward me would change.
For a long time I really thought, “How luck God is to have me as a follower.” I know it is pretty arrogant. I am thankful for the men and women in my life that walked with me to have God’s grace and gospel invade. I know that some of you reading this are put off by the above statement because you have had thought exactly opposite. There is no way that God could want you.
God is great. He is the amazing and lifted up one. He is the one who knows all things and invites us to join Him. He is the one who provides greatness to David and to us.
In the in between, the now and not yet, we can focus on the failure, the misstep too often. We neglect the praise of the One who makes all things new. He is the One who provides greatness to all of His choosing. Whether you are arrogant and self-focused or belittling to yourself and self-focused David reminds us to focus on God. He is where our eyes should turn and seek. It is according to His own heart that He makes great. And His great is not measured in our ways. His view is different. There is an old hymn that says, “Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.”