Joyful Re-Do

“David prepared a place for the ark of God and pitched a tent for it. Then David said that no one but the Levites may carry the ark of God, for the Lord had chosen them to carry the ark of the Lord and to minister to him forever. And David assembled all Israel at Jerusalem to bring up the ark of the Lord to its place. And David gathered together the sons of Aaron and the Levites… [He] summoned the priests, and the Levites, and said to them, ‘You are the heads of the fathers’ houses of the Levites. Consecrate yourselves, you and your brothers, so that you may bring up the ark of the Lord, the God of Israel, to the place that I have prepared for it.  Because you did not carry it the first time, the Lord our God broke out against us, because we did not seek him according to the rule.’ So the priests and the Levites consecrated themselves to bring up the ark of the Lord, the God of Israel.  And the Levites carried the ark of God on their shoulders with the poles, as Moses had commanded according to the word of the LordDavid also commanded the chiefs of the Levites to appoint their brothers as the singers who should play loudly on musical instruments, on harps and lyres and cymbals, to raise sounds of joy… So David and the elders of Israel and the commanders of thousands went to bring up the ark of the covenant of the Lord from the house of Obed-edom with rejoicing.  And because God helped the Levites who were carrying the ark of the covenant of the Lord, they sacrificed seven bulls and seven rams.” 1 Chronicles 15:1-4,11-16,25-26

This scene of preparation and the procession of the ark being carried into Jerusalem is a joyful one; but it was not always so. Three months prior, described in 2 Samuel 6:5-11, David led the first failed attempt to transport the ark, with his own choice of people in glad– but foolish– spontaneity. After God struck down Uzzah because of his error, David was angry and refused to continue, leaving the ark at the house of Obed-Edom. But God did a work in David’s heart over the following three months, a re-do of attitude and conviction. Restored in spirit and to right thinking, David carefully, and exuberantly, led the ark ‘home.’

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Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified… in your judgment. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. Then will you delight in right sacrifices, in burnt offerings.” Psalm 51:4,10,12,17,19

What needs a re-do in my heart, my thinking, my proclivities? Where am I stubbornly holding on to my wants and driving my agenda, giving in to impulsive inclinations and chafing at consequences or getting angry at rebuke?

Lord, expose the error of my ways, and set me aright. Show me the way to go, and develop in me a consistent will to follow Your lead, not mine. In You and Your paths are fullness of joy. (Psalm 143:10; 16:11)

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