The Father’s Sheep
“When David saw the angel about to destroy the people, he prayed, “Please! I’m the one who sinned; I, the shepherd, did the wrong. But these sheep, what did they do wrong? Punish me and my family, not them” (2 Samuel 24.17 MSG).
David’s kingship and life is coming to a close, so David decides to take a census of Israel. God judges the hearts of people, and He knows that David is acting in pride. David wants to see just how great his kingdom has become, but he has forgotten that everything belongs to the Lord. David realizes he has acted foolishly and repents, but God still demands justice for David’s transgression. Through a prophet, God gives David three punishments. Two punishments are on the people of David’s kingdom; however, only one punishment is on David and his family. After hiding from enemies most of his life, David does not choose the punishment where he and his family must run for three months. Instead, David allows a plague to hit his country for three days, killing 70,000 people. Finally, David remembers the days of his youth when he spent years caring for his father’s sheep, and he understands that he was born to be a shepherd for God’s sheep–His beloved children. David stops focusing on himself and his accomplishments and starts paying attention to the people that God has called him to serve. Many times Christians can get caught up in numbers, accomplishments and influence, which can take our eyes off the real reason we are here: We are here to love God and others and accomplish the purpose He has established for us before time began.
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect” (Romans 12.2 NLT).