King David: The Abuser

He was a man after God’s own heart. He was a man of authority, who held much power. He was king. He was celebrated. He was also all too human.

And there are times when he fell. Bathsheba must have been beautiful to awaken his hunger. He certainly saw enough sitting on the palace roof in the middle of what was maybe a sunny day. Maybe he was overlooking his city when his eyes fell on bare skin. The bare skin of a woman. Did he know her? Were they emotionally connected or complete strangers? We don’t know. But we know this: he was the one in power and he wanted HER.

In that moment of hunger he abused his power. No woman could possibly say no to the king. And he summoned her to his palace. Was it a gentle interaction? Was it forced? Was she used or coerced, we don’t know. But he was the one in control and authority to protect became the power to use.

He used that power to take her sexually. He used it to kill her husband, if from a distance.

But Nathan’s conviction of his actions was gentle. There were serious consequences for stealing another man’s wife, but God still wanted to love the youngest shepherd boy who had been pushed around by jealous brothers.

It happens. We abuse. I personally am guilty of abusing my influence to the point of manipulation. I have wanted to hit the innocent when I was exasperated. We have a need to hold control.

So what if we’ve done wrong? What happens that moment you realize that you have purposefully harmed another…and maybe you don’t know how to stop?

Repentance is God’s favorite response. His face shines upon those who confess their sins, take up their cross, and follow him. The first step is telling God we don’t want to. The next is seeking help.

God holds the broken hearted and there are some who are twisted solely for the evil taste of power, but even Hitler had a story of pain in his past. It doesn’t take much reflection to realize that we all want control. But we also need boundaries, places that are not ours to control.

I pray that if you find yourself hurting the ones you love physically, emotionally, spiritually, or sexually that you will find a way to sense the separation between “me” and “others” and find the control of “me” is enough. Seek help. Find someone who you can tell, that you need control and help to see how to hold it apart from harming the ones you love. I pray you can find a safe locus in God where you feel seen, known, forgiven…accepted.

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