Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16
Now when the king was settled in his house, and the Lord had given him rest from all his enemies around him, the king said to the prophet Nathan, ‘See now, I am living in a house of cedar, but the ark of God stays in a tent.’ Nathan said to the king, ‘Go, do all that you have in mind; for the Lord is with you.’
But that same night the word of the Lord came to Nathan: Go and tell my servant David: Thus says the Lord: Are you the one to build me a house to live in? — 2 Samuel 7:1-5
David was an “A” type, always busy, probably goal oriented. One project is done, now on to the next. He actually got into the worst trouble recorded about his life when he was not on the battlefield with his soldiers but back at the palace looking out over the city biding his time. When the story in our scripture today occurred, David had just returned the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem so it is easy to understand why he might have thought it a good idea to construct a permanent home for the Ark. Apparently Nathan, the prophet, thought it was a good idea too. After some reflection and most likely prayer, though Nathan, had a change of heart and credited it to the word of the Lord. The temple was not built under David.
Why do you suppose this scripture in included in the readings for Advent? As we wait, somewhat impatiently for the coming of the Christ child we are reminded that the Kingdom of God runs on God’s time. We are held to a high standard of seeking out God’s will for our actions. It requires us to be in constant communion with God. And I do not know about you, but it requires for me a generous dose of the spiritual gift of patience because I came equipped with a very limited supply.
During this holiday season everything seems to be on fast forward. Stores are crowded. There is not enough time in the day to get everything we need to get done accomplished. Even the good things that for many are a normal part of this season, helping the poor, for example, become just one more task to check off a list that gets longer and longer. We need to slow down take a deep breath and spend some quality time with God and let God order our lives.
Prayer: Source of Time Itself, order our lives so that we are fulfilling our purpose and your will. Show us what our real priorities need to be and help us make the changes in our lives that sets us on the better path. Amen.
All scriptures are quoted from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of American. Used by permission. All rights reserved.