Ruddy Kings Come and Go136059136771804 

So the king of Spain has abdicated. A new king will soon be in his place. That's what kings do, they come and they go.
 
In 1 Samuel 16 Samuel is sent to go and anoint the new king who is going to replace Saul. We know the story. He is instructed by the Lord to pay a certain farmer called Jesse a visit, one of his sons is going to become Israel's new monarch. So Samuel goes on his way and Jesse's quiver-full are lined up for inspection. 
 
The first prospective royal is the eldest, Eliab. Samuel is certain this is the one. Eliab looks the part, but no. The Lord tells Samuel not to look on the outward appearance, look on the heart. This is repeated through all the boys. Samuel reached the end of the line and none of them have been chosen by the Lord.
 
Samuel asks their dad 'Is this all your sons?' It isn't. There's one more. So David, the shepherd boy runt  is sent for. As if there's any point, if Eliab wasn't picked, David is hardly going to be!
 
But of course, God doesn't think the way men do, and David, as it turns out, is the chosen one. He will be King.
 
Now we are given a description of David at this point. He is described as 'ruddy', he had 'beautiful eyes' and was 'handsome'. He was a looker, but hardly a king. A pretty boy, not a warrior. But, despite appearances, he was God's man.
 
I have often heard this used to comfort Christians, don't worry, even if people look down on you, God sees your heart so be encouraged! Makes for a nice sound-bite but let's think about that. God sees your heart. Is that encouraging? God sees all you feel, think, desire and love. Are you encouraged? If your heart is like mine you shouldn't be. It's a scary thought, God knows my heart.
 
The real encouragement from this story is not that 'I'm wonderful on the inside so God will pick me.' It is that I'm not wonderful so God has picked a king to save me. We are more like the sons overlooked than the son who was chosen. David was called for a very particular purpose, to lead God's people. But even David, the king chosen by God, his heart failed him. In Psalm 51 he had to write 'Wash me thoroughly form my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.' The man chosen by God chose sin over God. 
 
But David points us forward to a better King. King Jesus who, truly, on the inside is perfect. He never sins or fails. He is perfect, stronger than Eliab and more righteous than David. He is more than ruddy, He is Divine and He will never leave His throne. Our only hope is not that we are good enough to be God's man, but that we look to God's Man, Jesus Christ, to be our Rescuer and King.
Aaron* Williamson, 02/06/2014