“And David became more and more powerful, because the LORD of Heaven’s Armies was with him.”
1 Chronicles 11:9
When Saul died, David became king, but his story is quite the opposite picture from Saul’s. The mightiest warriors in all Israel had long been flocking to David, even while Saul was still king. Now they had grown to “a great army, like the army of God.” (12:22) These undefeatable warriors declared David King, and his power became unstoppable.
What was the difference between the power of these two kings? I think today’s verse gives the clue, “…because the Lord of Heaven’s Armies was with him.” The power of God’s presence is a treasure, one that should never be taken lightly. The gift of God’s presence comes only from relationship. However, like with electricity, the connection must be tight for the power to flow.
Saul had experiences with God. Remember, he even prophesied a couple times, and may have even experienced emotion during those moments; but experiences did not change his life. On the other hand, David the shepherd communed with God on the hillsides of Judea, long before he lived in a palace. David learned to trust God with a lion, a bear, and a giant prior to leading armies. David the Psalmist was a worshipper before he became a king. David had relationship with his God, and that relationship gave him power.
God did not call us for occasional experiences with Him. He called us for relationship!