11 Now Hiram king of Tyre sent envoys to David, along with cedar logs and carpenters and stonemasons, and they built a palace for David. 12 Then David knew that the Lord had established him as king over Israel and had exalted his kingdom for the sake of his people Israel.
13 After he left Hebron, David took more concubines and wives in Jerusalem, and more sons and daughters were born to him.14 These are the names of the children born to him there: Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon, 15 Ibhar, Elishua, Nepheg, Japhia, 16 Elishama, Eliada and Eliphelet.
17 When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed king over Israel, they went up in full force to search for him, but David heard about it and went down to the stronghold.18 Now the Philistines had come and spread out in the Valley of Rephaim; 19 so David inquired of the Lord, “Shall I go and attack the Philistines? Will you deliver them into my hands?”
The Lord answered him, “Go, for I will surely deliver the Philistines into your hands.”
20 So David went to Baal Perazim, and there he defeated them. He said, “As waters break out, the Lord has broken out against my enemies before me.” So that place was called Baal Perazim.21 The Philistines abandoned their idols there, and David and his men carried them off.
22 Once more the Philistines came up and spread out in the Valley of Rephaim; 23 so David inquired of the Lord, and he answered, “Do not go straight up, but circle around behind them and attack them in front of the poplar trees. 24 As soon as you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the poplar trees, move quickly, because that will mean the Lord has gone out in front of you to strike the Philistine army.” 25 So David did as the Lord commanded him, and he struck down the Philistines all the way from Gibeon to Gezer.
Welcome back David… It seems to me like David has returned, he remembers who he is and he now believes that God has established him as king. He starts to receive favor from other kingdoms and is leading Israel to victory in battle against the Philistines. The question that goes through my mind at this point is: Did God remove His favor from David when he was in exile or did David turn his back on the Lords favor? I have heard people speak about this concept both ways when referring to their own lives but I wonder if we ever stop to think about what we are saying.
You may notice that I started my thoughts with a welcome back David… not welcome back God. If we believe that God withdraws His favor then we are saying that God is temperamental, prone to mood swings… quite human in His approach to us. I believe that God is the stable one in our relationship, He is always present, His grace is always sufficient… it is so sufficient that He pours out His grace on the wicked as well as the righteous according to Paul. It is important that we understand this about God…our loving Father. If you are feeling like God is distant today you don’t have to try harder to make Him come back to you. It is as simple as acknowledging that you have distanced yourself, hardened your heart towards Him. If that is you – simple turn back, open your heart and let Him embrace you again. Have a great week.