Today's devotion from 2 Samuel 11 & 12.
In the summer of 1997 I was called into the ministry. I had been serving in some capacity for a few months as a youth pastor, but it was not until that summer that I felt the overwhelming call of God to devote my life to serving Him and His people.
The problem that presented itself was twofold. First, I didn't know what that meant. I'm the kind of person that has to research and study, figure out all the answers and steps, then I'll move forward. Unfortunately for me, God was not giving me all the details. Instead, He was asking me to begin this journey by simply trusting Him, but the Enemy kept reminding me of my failures.
In response, God gave me Joshua 4 (you can read that post here), and this chapter of David's life. As I wrung my hands in the times of confrontation with my past, God brought me to David. What I found was a man after God's own heart, but completely flawed. In the tale of David's lurid affair with Bathsheba, we sometimes gloss over the fact that David's depravity led to military action that got many lives taken just to cover up his dalliance with a married woman.
David's life now included lying, adultery, and murder by inappropriate use of power. David's failures didn't justify my sin, but caused me to refocus on God's grace. In particular, 2 Samuel 11:27, the conclusion of this chapter, spoke to me. I read, "However, the Lord considered what David had done to be evil." Thinking and praying about this, God's love hit me like a thunderbolt. It was not David that displeased the LORD, but this act, this failure. David's identity was not tied up in his sin, and God saw the difference.
You are not your sin. Let that sink in. YOU are not your sin. You are MORE than your failures and flaws. When we let the enemy or others try to define who we are or our value by mistakes, we are robbing God of His right as our Creator and Father to give us our true identity in Him. When I realized this, I was free from the past, not because I'm special, but because Christ had set me free. He can and will do the same for you.