Do you ever struggle to not judge others? So often we see people making bad decisions and it is so plain to us that they are in the wrong. We can’t imagine how they do not see their own error or their poor reasoning. Then I think about a story in 2 Samuel 12:1-8. It is a time in the life of King David when he has grown bored by life, and he has an affair with another man’s wife and then orchestrated the man’s death to clean up his mess.
God sent the prophet Nathan to confront the king, but the prophet wisely knows that he must be careful with his words or he may lose his own life for truth telling. Nathan shares a tale with the King David about a rich man who had many sheep, but still steals a poor man’s only lamb and slaughters it for a banquet. When David hears this story, he is filled with rage and righteous indignation declaring the rich man must die. That is when Nathan bravely reveals that David is actually the rich man. When David heard the prophet declare, you are the man, it says "the scales fell from his eyes." He finally could see the truth and he repented.
For most of us, we don’t have a prophet helping us see the truth. Usually, we finally stumble upon our own faults when we are stuck in the middle of a mess we have created. It might be a financial situation or a relationship that goes south, but suddenly we see the error of our way and we are forced to see the chaos we have created. The good news is, like David, we can experience God’s forgiveness. He will even help us climb out of the disarray we are responsible for.
Still there will be consequences. Yet, we will eventually move past our mistake and we will know we are forgiven. I think David was chief among sinners, yet we also know David was a man after God’s heart. That means we are not eternally judged by our mistakes, rather we are chosen and accepted by God as His beloved children.