"When King David dwelt in his house and the Lord had given him rest from all his surrounding enemies."
II Samuel 7:1, Amplified Bible
"Women need solitude in order to find again the true essence of themselves: that firm strand which will be the indispensable center of a whole web of human relationships."
Anne Morrow Lindbergh
How has the busyness of my life interrupted the communion I long for with my heavenly Father?
What have I done to focus more on personal communion with God?
"Silent in God's presence, you can relax yourself completely. The restfulness of being alone at last, facing reality, may even make you laugh aloud for joy as you open your mind in perfect confidence and summon the whole bustling medley of burdensome thoughts before Him. Let them come, waiting quietly for each, without a shadow of dread. See how they show up in the deep calm of God's presence."
"By all means use some times to be alone. Salute thyself: See what thy soul doth wear."
It seems every time I get in a hurry to rush ahead to the next story in the Bible, God nudges me to slow down a little! The most recent "slow it down, Dorothy" came to me a few weeks ago when I decided that before we plowed ahead to II Samuel 11, which contains the story of Bathsheba and David, it would do me well to reread the chapters that are between the verses regarding Michal's lack of offspring, and David and Bathsheba's affair which created new offspring. So I took some time to read II Samuel, chapters 7-10, and I am glad I did - for several reasons.
First, II Samuel 7 contains vital information on the benefits of rest and communion with our Father, and this instruction applies directly to both women and men.
Second, chapters 8-10 identify the specific characteristics which the people of Israel found so endearing in the life of David. The study of these chapters will help us understand more clearly why, when David fell, he disappointed so many people. When we have chosen to live by a certain standard, and then, in a moment of weakness turn our backs on those principles, it makes our mistakes seem even larger. This is the great thing about the Bible, for as we read it through and study it chapter-by-chapter, it is as if we are being led on a journey that has signposts which provide guidance and a map that gives directions as well as explanations.
For today, I want to look at our text which is the first verse in II Samuel 7.
It is very interesting to check out some of the words in this one verse. First is the word "when." II Samuel 7:1 says that "when" David dwelt in his house. This means he wasn't out hiding in the mountains or doing battle or hunting for another wife. No, this incident took place, "when," David was at home, dwelling or residing and at rest. We are told God gave him this time of rest from doing battle. It was as though God knew something important which David had forgotten - and it was this: with reverie comes clear thinking. When there is communion with God, there is clarity of mind and purpose.
David had been so busy fighting and marrying and ruling - he had forgotten why he was doing what he was doing. And so, God gave him rest to give him time to reflect and think about what really mattered.
The British essayist, John Ruskin astutely observed that, "Peace of mind must come in its own time, as the waters settle themselves into clearness as well as quietness; you can no more filter your mind into purity than you can compress it into calmness; you must keep it pure if you will have it pure, and throw no stones into it, if you would have it quiet." As I read this passage, I thought back to a time in my own life when I was extremely confused. My young life had become very complex. I'd been working so much to drown out the voice of discontentment and bewilderment, I couldn't think straight. One day, I drove about an hour from my little mountain apartment to a beautiful lake. There I sat for hours, all alone, watching the smooth glassy surface of the calm lake, undisturbed by anything. In the peaceful solitude, I began slowly to recognize that many of the outside forces that were impacting my life, were pressures I had allowed to strike a blow on the serenity I longed for. In the midst of commotion, clarity for me was impossible and I imagine you might just feel the same way. It's no surprise, for I think David suffered the same fate. If we want illumination from heaven to light our paths, we need to take time and make sure we're following the right beam of light. However, because we often rush about with headlights coming at us in all directions, we frequently drive right off the road of purpose God has laid out for us.
When David went home and rested quietly at his house, his Father was able to commune with him. I wonder how often when I am rushing around, trying to accomplish what I think is important, I'm only missing out on my Father's heavenly advice?
"Every morning, lean thine arms awhile upon the window sill of heaven, and gaze upon the Lord…then, with that vision in thy heart, turn strong to meet the day."
Just for Me, Just for Today
"Each day I want to be with you, Lord.
I wait patiently for you to be near.
I shut out the "goings on" in my head, at least I try.
I so want to be with you, to hear
what special things you have to say -
just for me, just for today.
We sit on the bridge, just you and I,
and often watch as the stream flows by.
With our feet dangling and swinging,
I allow the stream to take my thoughts, to wash them away,
to clear my head to hear what you have to say -
just for me, just for today.
This is our special time together -- we share
what's happened yesterday, what's planned for today,
how much we love, how much we care.
Ideas flow, love reaches below.
Thank you, Father, for giving me this time every day -
just for me, just for today."
Mrs. Joy H. Tway
Dorothy Valcàrcel, Author
When A Woman Meets Jesus
P.S. My book, When A Woman Meets Jesus, is now available wherever books are sold and on the internet at www.amazon.com, Christianbook.com, or by calling toll-free, 1-800-Christian. You can also go to www.whenawomanmeetsjesus.com and purchase the book through Paypal for $8.00. Or by calling Transformation Garden at 1-888-397-4348.
For more from Dorothy, please visit transformationgarden.com.