I find it fascinating that after being chosen the future king over all Israel, David went right back to tending his father’s sheep. After being promised the kingdom, this famed giant-slayer, writer of so many beautiful songs in the Bible, continued to labor in a dirty pasture. In fact, from the time David was anointed king by the prophet Samuel, to the time he actually became king, fourteen years had passed. Those years must have seemed endless to David. He must have stared at those mangy sheep and thought, “God, what are You doing?”
We can look back and know what God was doing. God was making a king. A great king. A king who was humble, faithful in the little things, courageous, loyal, selfless — a man of integrity and honor. David learned to be humble and faithful in the little things in that sheep pasture. He learned to be courageous and trusting in his mighty God when he killed the giant Goliath. He learned to be loyal and selfless when he became best friends with Jonathan, the king’s son, heir to the very throne David was promised. Instead of seeing Jonathan as a threat, the Bible says David loved Jonathan as he loved his own life. David learned to be a man of integrity and honor when he had the chance to kill King Saul. Saul had grown very jealous when David killed Goliath, and all the people had admired David’s valor. Saul even tried to kill David several times. Then one day, in a cave, David had the opportunity to kill Saul. It was his chance to finally become king, but instead he said, “Far be it from me to stretch out my hand against the Lord’s anointed” (paraphrased from I Samuel 24).
God knew exactly what He was doing during those fourteen years in David’s life. David didn’t know. But God knew. God’s plan for David was good. His timing was right. So when you are in that “sheep-pasture” place in your life, remember to trust in God. His ways are perfect!
“As for God, His way is blameless.”
Psalm 18:30a (NASB)
His Perfect Ways