Pause and Think

One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of his palace.  From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful, and David sent someone to find out about her.  . . . Then David sent messengers to get her. She came to him, and he slept with her.  . . . Then she went back home. The woman conceived and sent word to David, saying, ‘’I am pregnant.’’
2 Samuel 11:2-5
David lived a very fascinating life. His life provides us with everything we need to know -- good and bad -- to live a successful life. His love for God is unparalleled in Scripture. His relationship with God was so tender and so intimate that God described him as ‘’a man after my own heart.’’ The Psalms provide us with a glimpse into how David’s heart yearned after God. David truly loved God. We owe a lot to David when it comes to learning to draw close to God.

David’s relationship with God also gives us a glimpse into the righteousness of God. God is so utterly righteous that He would show no favoritism when His very dear servant sinned against Him. In fact, He dealt rather severely with him! There is so much to learn from David.

As I ponder over the whole issue with Bathsheba, my mind is arrested by one thought: ‘’What if David had paused to think for a moment when he saw Bathsheba bathing from his rooftop?’’ What if he had decided to turn away and not dwell on it? What if he had not sent someone to inquire about her? What if he had not asked Bathsheba to be brought to the palace? What if he had not pursued her? What if he had paused to think about the consequences of his actions?

You and I will always face temptations. It is a normal part of life. In fact the Bible tells us that even Jesus was tempted in every way as we are and yet He was without sin (Hebrews 4:15).
The key thing is how we respond to temptations. It pays to pause and think before acting!

So how do you respond when you are tempted to react in anger because someone has provoked you? How about if you deliberately paused for a moment to think a bit before reacting? How about when someone insults you by their words or actions? Can you imagine how different the outcome could be if you paused to think before reacting? How about when you are tempted to steal, cheat or do something illegal or unethical? What a difference it would make if we simply paused to think before we reacted! It takes discipline but it works!

So, Question: How about if David had paused to think for a moment before pursuing Bathsheba? Was it his fault that he saw what he saw? Absolutely not! But how about if he had paused to think before his actions? It would certainly have made a world of difference. 

There are many languishing in jail today who would not be there if they had only paused for a moment to think! So, we have a lot to learn from David. We learn from him that pausing to think before giving in to temptations can save us from multitudes of problems. So, pause and think.

Prayer: Father, as I look back, there are many problems I could have avoided if I had only paused for a moment to think about the effects of my choices. Please help me to always pause to think, no matter how strong the pull may be. Amen.