Daily D – 2 Samuel 18:18
2 Samuel 18:18 During his lifetime, Absalom had built a monument to himself in the King’s Valley, for he said, “I have no son to carry on my name.” He named the monument after himself, and it is known as Absalom’s Monument to this day. (NLT)
2 Samuel 14:25-27 Now Absalom was praised as the most handsome man in all Israel. He was flawless from head to foot. He cut his hair only once a year, and then only because it was so heavy. When he weighed it out, it came to five pounds! He had three sons and one daughter. His daughter’s name was Tamar, and she was very beautiful. (NLT)
David’s son Absalom was far too handsome for his own good. It’s impossible to measure up to a person infected with hubris. Narcissists only have eyes for themselves. Unearned characteristics are no substitute for character.
Absalom had three sons and a daughter and none of them measured up to Dear Old Dad. Only He Himself was as good as He Himself. If He had been successful in stealing the kingdom from His father, the dynasty quite likely would have ended with His death. He was all about Himself. If He had a tattoo, it probably read, “I Love Me.”
Absalom would have loved living in today’s social media-saturated world. Can you imagine all the selfies? It’s doubtful He would ever agree to a group photo. How would you like to scroll through the photos on His phone? “Me on the way to kill My father and steal his throne.” “Me on the throne with just the right crown to accent My flowing locks.” “Me on My mule leading My army.”
He would not be happy, however, with someone’s Instagram post of Him hanging from a tree with His hair stuck in the branches.
People speculate who Carly Simon was talking about in her hit song, You’re So Vain. Maybe it was Absalom.
What did Solomon mean when he wrote, “Vanity of vanities, all is vanity?” He could have been thinking about his handsome brother.
What if Absalom had lived long enough to begin balding? What if he had developed a pronounced wine belly? What if he became a bit hard of hearing? Would he have fallen out of love with himself? Or would he have become even more dangerous to others than he was? We will never know.
1. Let other people build monuments to you.
2. Train your sons and daughters to lead with character and competence.
3. Give your best attention to others.
Absalom was endlessly fascinated with himself. His story ended in a predictable tragedy.
What if he had used all the gifts God gave him in service to others? That would have been a beautiful life.
How will you use the gifts God gave you today? How about building a more beautiful world?
I will use what God has given me to join him in building a more beautiful world reflecting his perfection and joy.
Our Father, it’s not about me. Empower me to live a life endlessly fascinated with others. Give me the wisdom to help others learn, grow, and develop into leaders of character. May the only monuments I ever build honor others. Amen.
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Psalm 139:17, 18 How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!
2 Corinthians 5:1-5 For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands. We grow weary in our present bodies, and we long to put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.
1 Corinthians 10:13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.