Worship and a Heart After God.
Read 1 Samuel 13:8-14
“The Lord has sought out for Himself a man after His own heart.”
The impact and quality of a person’s life are not measured by what a person has done or even by what people say about them in the present. The impact of a person’s life is revealed by what they say about the person long after their life has ended. In Saul and David, we find a contrast between two leaders. Saul was the leader of the people’s choosing. In 1 Samuel 8, the people of Israel rejected God’s theocratic rule and instead wanted to follow the patterns of the nations around them by having their own king, one who would rule over them and lead them into battle. Consequently, Saul was the logical choice of the people. He was impressive in his physical appearance, standing literally head and shoulders above the rest. He had all the outward appearance and qualifications (1 Sam. 9:2). For the people, he was the epitome of the type of leader they wanted. David, on the other hand, was the opposite. When Samuel came to Jesse in a quest to appoint a new king, Jesse paraded all his sons except David, for he considered David too young and insignificant to be a potential king (1 Sam 16:6-11). Yet in the end, history regarded Saul as the embodiment of failure. However, David, the one overlooked even by his own father, became the quintessential leader. Long after his death, David would stand as the yardstick by which the leaders of Judah would be measured (see for example 2 Kings 14:3). But what fully testified of David’s character was not the testimony of others, but the affirmation of God that David was a man after God’s own heart. The point is that David lived in agreement with the heart of God, that David sought to live in a way that reflected the heart of God.
This is what brings us to the heart of worship. The writing of David, reflected in many of the Psalms he penned, reflects one who understood and valued the worship of God. Understanding biblical worship begins with the study and consideration of David’s understanding of worship. But his understanding of worship was not just in his prolific writing of worship hymns to be sung, it was reflected in the theme of his songs which centered on the character of God and our obedience to him. For David, obedience was not a matter of following rules and regulations, but an expression of his intense desire to conform his heart to the heart of God. It was reflected in his unquenchable desire to obey God’s word. His desire for submission and conformity to the heart and mind of God was so great that his prayer was that God would “search me and know my heart; try me and know my anxious thoughts and see if there be any hurtful way in me” (Psalm 139:23-24).
It is said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, for imitation is the ultimate expression of respect.We strive to imitate the people we respect the most. The same may be said of worship.To genuinely worship God is to desire to be of one mind and heart with God. For David, his greatest act of worship was not in the songs he penned, but in his intense desire to conform his heart to the heart of God. This should then become the one prayer that directs all prayers.Today, ask God to begin to give