Until my baby died, the quicksand kept pulling me down.

One step at a time, I was sucked into the mire deeper and deeper.

I knew the king was in his palace that day. Maybe I wanted to punish him for staying safely in Jerusalem while my husband, Uriah, and the rest of the army faced the enemy on the battlefield.

I knew King David could see the roof of my house from his palace balcony, where he liked to walk, but that day I chose to bathe on the roof in broad daylight.

That was my first step into the quagmire. But I didn't expect what happened next. One of the king's servants appeared at my door, saying my presence was requested at the palace.

How could I refuse? He was not only the king, he was my husband’s supreme commander. And perhaps I was lonely. Whatever the reason, I went to the king and willingly gave myself to him.

We enjoyed being together and the loneliness faded away. Everything seemed wonderful.

Until I learned I was pregnant.

Since my husband had been away at war, everyone would know that I had been unfaithful. Uriah could have me stoned for adultery.

When I revealed the situation to David, the color fled from his face. Soldiers would no longer want to fight for a king who slept with the wife of one of his commanders, while the army slept on the ground miles from home. He devised a plan and sent for Uriah, but when David told him to go home and spend time with me, he refused to even sleep in the house. "How can I enjoy any comforts while my men are on the front lines?" he asked me. Nothing I did could seduce him to lay with me.

Then David arranged for Uriah to be caught in the middle of the line of battle, ensuring that he would be killed. When the word of his death reached me, I pretended to grieve but inside I was relieved. I thanked God for giving me—and the king—a way out of our predicament.

How wrong I was!

David and I married and soon we celebrated the birth of our son. Life seemed to be all I ever wanted it to be. David wanted an heir to the throne, and he believed our son would be king one day.

When the baby became ill, David begged God to heal him but nothing helped. Not his prayers. Not sacrifices. Not the herbs and spices of the healers. After our son died, I thought the heartbreak would kill us, too.

That's when God showed me the sins we had committed against Him. I confessed my transgressions to God and knew the cleansing power of His forgiveness.

It took David awhile, but after he went to see the priest, he changed. He returned with a peace about him that he had not shown since we met. He even wrote this beautiful song that says, “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.”

Maybe you've heard it, but no one can sing it like David can. His voice resonates with his passion and love for the Lord.

God pulled us out of the mighty mess we walked into with such stubbornness. He rescued us and gave us another chance. He also gave us another son.

See, he's sleeping now. We named him Solomon. And our God has promised me that he will be a great king, and that through his children, all the people of the world will be saved.

Aren’t you grateful that God is a God of second chances?

© 2012 Marie Wells Coutu


Bathsheba's Story

 
 
by Susan Tuttle

Do you know that you are loved? Before we can talk about healing, we need a foundation. One to build on. Love is a great place to start.

Don’t allow yourself to believe that your sin is too big for Him.  Christ knew we were sinners and yet He took on the cross for us. I love Romans 5:8, “While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”  He knew we could not do it alone. He knew we were imperfect people…sinners. Yet His love was bigger than our sins. He died so His blood could cover our sins, and we could step into His presence. All He asks is that we acknowledge Him as Lord and invite Him into our lives.

And here’s the best part, when you do that—believe in Him—nothing can separate you from Him. Once you call on His name, ask Him into your life, nothing will ever separate you from God.  Romans 8:38 & 39 says “…neither death, nor life, neither angels or demons, neither present or future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” 

I want you to notice something in that passage. Among the things listed is “neither present or future”. Why doesn’t it mention our past?  Well, I want to give you one more scripture that always helps me.  2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come; the old is gone, the new is here!”  The moment you accept Christ, your past is wiped clean, covered with His blood, seen no more. We struggle with that as humans, but let’s be clear—God doesn’t.  It is over. Finished. No more.  He doesn’t need to mention our past because it’s gone.

Beloved, this world is a tough place.  But God is bigger. And He loves you. Believe in that love today. Fall into it, find comfort in it. It’s where the healing can begin.

 
 
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By Marie Wells Coutu

Every year about this time, the dead flowers are removed from this flower bed at an office building near me, leaving a wide brown swath of dirt for a few days. Then some fall flowers are planted to replace the ones that don’t thrive in this spot where hey get full sun.

This year, they did add the elephant ear on the ends, which have done pretty well. But for some reason, each spring the flowers of choice are ones that really would prefer a shadier location.

Do you ever repeat the same old mistakes, year after year, month after month, even day after day? I know I do.

Sometimes I plead ignorance—I just don’t realize that what I’m doing is dumb, or wrong, or hurtful to someone I love. Other times, I know that my actions are not pleasing to God, but I choose to continue because I’m weak. Or just because, deep down, I don’t want to change.

But the good news is that God can help us avoid making the same mistakes over and over again, if we ask. King David wrote in Psalm 19:12-13, “Who can notice every mistake? Forgive my hidden faults. Keep me from sinning. Do not let anyone gain control over me. Then I will be blameless, and I will be free from any great offense” (GWT).

Not only will He keep us from sinning, but He will forgive even those offenses that no one else knows about. And once He forgives, we become sin-free in God’s eyes.

Instead of planting the same flowers in the wrong place, I’m going to ask God to help me plant beautiful flowers in the right places—in the lives of others. I trust Him to change my heart so that I want to make the effort to control my tongue, my mind, and my heart.

What repeated mistake will you ask Him to help you with today?