If you look at the Old Testament characters as if they are mirrors, you will always find yourself in them. David is a great example of what happens when we offer our lives to King Jesus. Just as David was offered a kingdom, so are we offered a kingdom. We’ll find that the first five chapters in 2 Samuel reveal what tries to undermine and overthrow the life God intends for you as you’re learning to reign in life under Jesus Christ.

2 Samuel 1. Instead of celebrating the death of Saul, a man who sought to kill David for many years, David repeatedly laments, “How the mighty have fallen!” If you aren’t familiar with its popular use, it is usually a mocking or demeaning remark to indicate a reduction in status, a moral failure, a day of reckoning. But David uses it to describe his self-reflective, soul-searching lament. Think of a time when someone who mistreated you fell into hard times. Did you lament, “How the mighty have fallen”? Ask the Lord to help you do better next time.

2 Samuel 2-4. Here we see numerous characters work at building personal kingdoms instead of God’s kingdom. David’s friends seem aligned with God’s purposes one minute and opposed to them the next. Can you relate? Take a moment to ask the Lord, “What is driving the conflict I’m facing?” You don’t call it, “the pesky Philistines,” but you might call it, “anxiety” or “jealousy” or “bitterness” or “resentment” or “worry.” Like David, “inquire of the Lord” (2:1).

2 Samuel 5. David knew that kingdoms implode if they refuse to deal with longstanding antagonists. They have to be dealt with; David needed something to “break” the cycle. He needed to encounter “the Lord of bursting through” (5:20). Who doesn’t? Ask the Lord to reveal himself as the Lord of the breakthrough in what feels like a never-ending cycle in your life.