Updated: May 20, 2019
Here is the thing about mistakes; They are unavoidable. And they are also very costly. Everyone makes mistakes. Sometimes we make smaller ones that seem repairable and sometimes we make big ones that seem like its the end of the world.
But here is the thing; mistakes where never meant to keep us down. They are meant for us to use as benchmarks for self reflection and growth. The truth of the matter is this, you will never truly know what you are capable of if you don't make mistakes. Mistakes show you what is inside of you (whether good or bad) and it is up to you what you do with it. I love this story from the Bible because there is so much to learn from it. It is the story of David and Bathsheba.
It is full of lust, adultery, betrayal, and murder.
The story goes like this. It was a beautiful spring day. David was supposed to be at war but he was like, "Nah, i don't feel like it." So instead he sent his army to go. One day he went up on the roof to chill and saw a beautiful lady who was naked, bathing. He got tempted and sent his men to find out who she was. They came back and told him that she was married to one of his soldiers (who was at war, by the way). He asked his men to get her. She came in his palace and he slept with her. Oh and by the way, i should add that David was married. He had at least 6 wives and a few other legal side chicks (Concubines). So this man did not lack a *Vag* to stick his *D* in. But yet, he strongly felt the need to sleep with someone else's ONLY wife. HMMM.
Moving on. So he sleeps with her and gets her pregnant. This is not good...for him. For her, it's child support MONAY...just kidding. They didn't have that back then. Anyway, he obviously doesn't intend to be part of this child's life so he tells the girl to go back home, then he sends for her husband, Uriah, to come back home from war temporary. He comes back home and David tries to trick him to go home and sleep with his wife that way she can pretend that its his baby. The plan fails. Dude never makes it home. He sleeps outside the palace. David goes to plan B. He tries to get him drunk then send him off home to his wife but this man yet again did not make it home. He slept outside the gate of the Palace. (someone insert the laughing/crying emoji here). David asked him why he did not go home and he said it did not feel right for him to go home and sleep with his wife and lie in his bed when his fellow soldiers are dying in battle. What a stand up guy.
So David just decides to take matters into his own hands. He tells the guy its time to go back to war but that he has a letter he needs him to deliver to the commander of the army. The letter basically says that the Commander of the army should put Uriah, the husband, in the fiercest part of the battle so that he can die. So this poor guy delivered his death sentence to the commander, and he was placed in the fiercest place of the battle and he was killed. His wife mourned for him. (Fake). And after she was done "mourning", David married her and she became his wife. But boy or boy, God was NOT having it and there was a HEAP of CONSEQUENCES in David's future because of this grave mistake. But before we get to that, here are a few mistakes that David made in this story, and how you can avoid making them.
"In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war, David sent Joab out with the king’s men and the whole Israelite army. They destroyed the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. But David remained in Jerusalem." 2 Samuel 11:1
1) He Was at the Wrong Place at the Wrong Time.
The Bible clearly states that, "at the the time that Kings went to war...David Remained in Jerusalem". It was Spring time and it was usually the Season or time that all the kings go to war, and David was supposed to be at war as well. But he decided not to go. When his fellow kings all left the comfort of their homes and kingdoms to go and fight for the their countries, David chose to not go, and that put him in a lot of trouble. "One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful, and David sent someone to find out about her. The man said, “She is Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah the Hittite.” Then David sent messengers to get her. She came to him, and he slept with her." 2 Samuel 11:2-4 The Bible doesn't tell us why David chose not to go to war. It mustn't have been that important because if it was, it would have been mentioned. He just chose not to go. Choosing to forsake your duties and obligations for less important stuff can really put you in a lot of trouble. I remember when i used to be in college, i noticed that most of the days that i made bad decisions were the days i skipped class (bad student. Kids, don't try this at home). And i remember telling myself, "If you had been in class, (where you were supposed to be), this wouldn't have happened."
When you choose to be at the right place at the right time, God gives you the grace to endure or go through what must come your way. But if you disobey and choose another path at that moment, you are left unprotected and vulnerable and anything can happen. We all have stories or know of someone who went where they shouldn't have gone and something bad happened. It pays to live a clean life with integrity.
How to Avoid: I know sometimes it is hard but strive to fulfill your obligations. Get up and go to work, go to school, stay home with your spouse rather than going to a place you may be tempted, don't entertain any kind of talk or behavior around you, stay away from parties or certain scenes if you are trying to stay sober. Avoid certain places and certain people at all cost. Flee from temptation. Don't jog, don't sprint, FLEE. Like your life depends on it because it does. Sin feels good for a minute but the consequences are very costly and they last a lifetime.
2) He Refused to Take Accountability For His Mistake and Tried to Cover It Up by Pinning It On Someone Else.
"So David sent this word to Joab: “Send me Uriah the Hittite.” And Joab sent him to David. then David said to Uriah, “Go down to your house and wash your feet.” So Uriah left the palace, and a gift from the king was sent after him. But Uriah slept at the entrance to the palace with all his master’s servants and did not go down to his house. David was told, “Uriah did not go home.” So he asked Uriah, “Haven’t you just come from a military campaign? Why didn’t you go home?”Uriah said to David, “The ark and Israel and Judah are staying in tents,[a] and my commander Joab and my lord’s men are camped in the open country. How could I go to my house to eat and drink and make love to my wife? As surely as you live, I will not do such a thing!”" 2 Samuel 11:6-11 David slept with another man's wife. Not just any man, one of his top soldier's wife, and gets her pregnant.
Instead of just coming clean about what he did and try to make amends for his wrong doing, he is trying to cover it up by having this man go home and sleep with his wife so that he thinks that's his child. I'm just sitting here thinking, what if that plan succeeded? David would have been comfortable the rest of his life letting another man a) raise his child and b) let that man raise the child of his wife's lover? Now that was cruel. The plan back fired of course. But it just meant that David had to build a bigger hole for himself.
How to Avoid: Two, three, four, or even more more wrongs do not and will never make a right. If you screwed up, own up to it. If there are people involved, come clean, apologize and find a way to right that wrong. If you try to cover it up, you will only add to your troubles and it will be a lot harder to get out of it. Get out now. Come clean.
"In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah. In it he wrote, “Put Uriah out in front where the fighting is fiercest. Then withdraw from him so he will be struck down and die.”So while Joab had the city under siege, he put Uriah at a place where he knew the strongest defenders were. When the men of the city came out and fought against Joab, some of the men in David’s army fell; moreover, Uriah the Hittite died." 2 Samuel 11: 14-17
Have you ever been so paranoid to keep something hidden that you are willing to do anything to keep it a secret? That is the place that David was at. God called David a man after His own heart because David was a good man and he had a good heart, among-st many things. Yet this good man was so paranoid of keeping what he did a secret that he actually had this man killed. He was the King of Israel. Even if it came out, the most they would have done to him was to frown upon his actions. There was nothing else that could have been done to him that bad, that would warrant him to result to murder to keep his secret safe. Maybe his reputation would have been tainted a bit but that's hardly a call for murder. I'll like to believe that he wasn't thinking straight and that's why he made that decision, out of fear and paranoia.
How to Avoid: Living in a state of paranoia will cloud your mind and your judgment. Stop making assumptions. Things are not always as they seem. Stop entertaining wrong thoughts and ideas. Stop running and face it. No, you can't move to Nova Scotia. No, you can't blame it on some made up disease (Skittles Pox). No, you can't "accidentally" run them over with your car. No, you can't move to Earth 19 and have your alter ego who lives there come and deal with the consequences here (only Flash fans will get this), etc. The point is this: Stop trying to run and face it and let the chips fall where they may. You'll be all right.
4) Choosing to Make That Mistake A Long Term Thing
"When Uriah’s wife heard that her husband was dead, she mourned for him. After the time of mourning was over, David had her brought to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But the thing David had done displeased the Lord." 2 Samuel 11:26-27
David has slept with someone's wife. He got her pregnant. Then tried to trick her husband into sleeping with her so he thinks its his. It didn't work. So he got the man killed. At this point, you would think the David, the man after God's own heart, would have at least a little bit of remorse about what he did and repent or something. Nah. He waits for the woman to stop mourning then marries her. He murdered husband then married her. He took this thing that should have been a one time mistake, a slip up, that could have been easily fixed with lots of amends, and prolonged it and made it a permanent badge of shame and dishonor in his life. Whether people knew what he did or not, it did not change. God knew. And God was not pleased. Retribution is coming for David.
How To Avoid: Do not make a permanent fixture out of something that was suppose to be just a fleeting second in your life. You will reap the painful consequences and it will not feel good. Leave all your screw-ups and mistakes in the past, where they belong. Don't carry them along into the new chapters of your life. They will mess up a lot of things along the way.
In Part 2, i will speak about the consequences that David faced as a result of these mistakes.
To Conclude Part 1:
Sin feels good for like 2 seconds but you'll pay for it for years. Think of a man who has sex with a woman for 5 minutes. In those 5 minutes, he gets her pregnant or gets infected with an incurable disease. Five minutes of pleasure, in exchange for the rest of your life. Is it really worth it? No, its not. Flee from sin. Flee from temptation. Fulfill your duties, fulfill your obligations, be where you are supposed to be, and don't go where you don't need to go. Cut out certain people from your life. And make wise choices.