And David shepherded them with integrity of heart; with skillful hands he led them. Psalm 78:72
After several verses describing the ups and downs, successes and failures, the faithful and faithlessness of Israel, the psalmist brings us to his current day – God chose David to pastor His people and to lead them as their shepherd-king. God selected David, bringing him from the shepherd fields to lead sheep of another kind. And David through the integrity of his heart and the skillfulness of his hands was a man after God’s own heart who led the people well.
I often have the fear of pastoring in me. How do I shepherd these people? Who is possibly up to such a task? It’s reassuring, I guess, that most pastors are struck with the fear and the sense of inadequacy from time to time. The ones who don’t, well… you probably don’t want to be led by them. But back to the point: David also had feelings of inadequacy! We’ve read as much in his story recently. He relied on God with a humility of heart and was used mightily. Through these two things, the psalmist writes, he lead Israel:
- Integrity of heart
- Skillfulness of hands
Not perfectly, of course. There are examples from David’s life when he failed in both, but because of his humility, God continued to use him. And well!
God can use me too as my heart remains humble and I pursue Him with my whole heart. As I live by the integrity of my heart and as God has re-created me to be in Christ, I will be a good leader. As I continue to improve the various skills I need, God will use me to shepherd His people. I will still have feelings of inferiority, but that’s OK. God can do all things! (Phil. 4:13)
Father, make me more like Jesus today and use me to lead your people well.