On the Run
Before he was a king, David was a shepherd boy, an armour bearer and harp player for King Saul … then he became a man on the run, fearing for his life. The very one for whom he’d played the harp, the very one for whom he ushered in the presence of God, now searched for him to kill him.
King Saul wanted David dead.
So Saul mustered all his army to go down to Keilah and besiege David and his men. When David realized that Saul was planning to harm him, he told Abiathar the priest, “Bring the ephod.” Then David said, “O Lord God of Israel, your servant has clearly heard that Saul is planning to come to Keilah to destroy the city because of me.
1 Samuel 23:8-10 NET
Saul was so intent on killing David that he was willing to take out David’s men and a whole city to do so.
Still, David Worshipped
I’ve been reading the Bible chronologically this year, something I’ve never done before. Because I’m reading in order of when things actually happened, as I read 1 Samuel 21-27 I weaved in and out of the Psalms. All over the Psalms, actually. I knew some of the Psalms were written while David was hiding from Saul at En Gedi. But as I read about David running for his life, coming inches from Saul but not harming him (only cutting a corner of his robe to prove he didn’t want to harm Saul), and then, maybe in the same day, finding quieter moments by the caves and waterfalls of En Gedi . . . the words on the page came alive for me.
David was in a battle for his life . . . but he didn’t neglect worshipping God. Can you picture David writing these scriptures while sitting beside Ein Gedi’s waterfall?
King David’s Identity
According to scripture, there are two things David always was: a worshipper and a warrior.
From the time he was a young boy taking care of his father’s sheep (and wrestling bears and lions to protect the flock), he was a worshipper and after God’s heart (see 1 Samuel 13:14). Because David’s heart was so for God and he spent countless hours in God’s presence, God was able to trust David as king of Israel. He was even able to trust David with the knowledge that this was his call even when there was another king in place. And as long as Saul was ruling, David would not touch him or dishonor him (see 1 Samuel 24:11).
Draw Close to The Heart of God
Make time for worship. Even in the midst of the hardest battles, get close to the heart of God where you will draw strength from Him. Where He can prune away the things that are hardening our hearts. Where He can purify us for our good, for the good of the call, and for the good of His Kingdom.
I have asked the Lord for one thing—
this is what I desire!
I want to live in the Lord’s house all the days of my life,
so I can gaze at the splendor of the Lord
and contemplate in his temple.
Psalm 27: 4 NET