6-Week Series: Against All Odds


Summary: God blesses a life which is lived in pursuit of him.

What is God looking for in a person or a church he can use in a mighty way? Why does it seem that God blesses one person, or church more than another? When I refer to being blest I am not referring to financial or numerical blessing but to a spiritual blessing, an outpouring of God’s Spirit. We find the answer in the life of David, who we have been looking at over the summer. David began as the shepherd boy, the last of eight son’s, and yet he was handpicked by God to be king. David was one of the most successful kings in the history of the people of Israel. God used David in a mighty way. Not only did David experience great blessing as king but the people of Israel experienced his blessing. According to Bible there was one thing which set David apart from everyone else, his heart. When the prophet Samuel was sent by God to the house of Jesse to anoint the next king he was impressed by the features of David’s brothers, but…

NIV 1 Samuel 16:7 But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."

God was looking at David’s heart. It was the reason God had chosen David. God’s greatest qualification wasn’t intelligence, skills or abilities, or appearance, but a person after God’s heart. Scripture reminds us that David was a man after God’s own heart. David’s heart beat in sync with God’s. [Illust. Metronome]. Whatever God cared about, David cared about. Whatever God loved, David loved. What God wanted to see accomplished, David wanted to see accomplished.

The kind of people God is looking for to use in a mighty way, the kind of people God blesses are people after God’s heart. God works powerfully in the lives of people and in churches who have a heart for Him.

What does it mean to be a person after God’s heart?

A person after God’s heart…

I. Is Obedient to God in All Matters or Does God’s Will in All Matters

The first priority of being a person who has a heart for God is to do everything God wants us to do, to carry out God’s will.

Jesus said it this way, “If you love me, obey my commands (John 14:15).”

God says to us if you want to be after my heart, do what I say. The first we hear of David being a man after God’s heart is during his predecessor Saul’s reign. The prophet Samuel had apparently told Saul to wait seven days for his arrival to offer a sacrifice to the Lord to receive his blessing before going off to battle. Saul waited, one day, two days, three days. Meanwhile, the enemy, the Philistines had amassed a huge army of soldiers and chariots ready for battle. With every day the terrified Israelite army became smaller and smaller. Finally seven days went by and no Samuel. So Saul decided he couldn’t wait any longer for Samuel because otherwise he wouldn’t have enough soldiers to fight the battle. So he chose to offer the ritual sacrifice to God himself. Just as Saul finished the sacrifice, guess who showed up, that’s right Samuel. And he was not happy. Samuel was not happy because Saul violated his direct order by going ahead without him, and on top of that God had specific ways in which to offer sacrifices, and they were only to be done by a priest, no one else. In Saul’s impatience he disobeyed God’s command. And this was Samuel’s response:

NLT 1 Samuel 13:13 "How foolish!" Samuel exclaimed. "You have disobeyed the command of the LORD your God. Had you obeyed, the LORD would have established your kingdom over Israel forever. 14 But now your dynasty must end, for the LORD has sought out a man after his own heart. The LORD has already chosen him to be king over his people, for you have not obeyed the LORD’s command."

The reason God took away the kingdom from Saul’s descendents was because he disobeyed God’s commandments. Saul didn’t do what God wanted him to do. The kind of king God was looking for was a person who had a heart for God, in other words, one who would obey God’s commands, a person like David.

Hundreds of years later, after Jesus another guy named Saul, also known as Paul, taught about what it was that separated Saul from David he said:

NIV Acts 13:22 "After removing Saul, he [God] made David their king. He testified concerning him: ’I have found David son of Jesse a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.’"

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