Too Little, Too Late
Posted: Thursday, June 1
2 Samuel 18:1-19:10
Verse of the day:
The king was overcome with emotion. He went up to the room over the gateway and burst into tears. And as he went, he cried, “O my son Absalom! My son, my son Absalom! If only I had died instead of you! O Absalom, my son, my son.” (2 Samuel 18:33)
In today’s Bible reading we see the painful conclusion to the long struggle between David and his son Absalom. It’s an example of a relationship that could have been amazing but in the end was just agonizing.
I imagine that as a child Absalom adored his daddy. His dad was a hero; he was the king, strong and smart and musically talented. David had plenty of weaknesses but those weren’t clearly seen until a crisis hit the home when Amnon raped Tamar. David got mad but never cleaned up the mess and this is when things begin to spiral in his relationship with Absalom.
Absalom spent two years waiting for David to punish Amnon, three years in hiding after killing his brother, two years in Jerusalem waiting for David to receive him and four years working a plan to overthrow his father. Although Absalom’s rebellion was inexcusable it is understandable. Absalom tried everything he knew to get his father’s attention and when one thing wouldn’t work he’d move to more extreme measures, finally leading a rebellion against his dad that led to 20,000 men losing their lives.
During the battle Absalom rode a mule under a tree and his hair got caught in the branches. Joab received word of this and pierced him with 3 daggers in the heart as he dangled in the air. And when David receives this news he says:
“O my son Absalom! My son, my son Absalom! If only I had died instead of you! O Absalom, my son, my son.”
Suddenly there is an outpouring of love from the heart of this father. Tears he should have cried and words he should have said long ago burst from his lips. But it was too little, too late. Unfortunately this story plays out time and again amongst followers of Christ. Someone sins, sin is ignored or covered up, resentment grows which creates a fracture and ultimately death in the relationship. That’s the pattern. So repent if needed. Offer grace and forgiveness. Shed tears, show love and use your words to let your family know how much they mean to you. Don’t wait until it’s too little, too late.