Loyal to the royal

2 Samuel 15:19-21  19 The king said to Ittai the Gittite, “Why should you come along with us? Go back and stay with King Absalom. You are a foreigner, an exile from your homeland. 20 You came only yesterday. And today shall I make you wander about with us, when I do not know where I am going? Go back, and take your countrymen. May kindness and faithfulness be with you.” 21 But Ittai replied to the king, “As surely as the LORD lives, and as my lord the king lives, wherever my lord the king may be, whether it means life or death, there will your servant be.”

What can be said for Ittai the Gittite except for that he was loyal?  He was loyal to the royal, baby!  He had started working for King David just the day before and when David had to flee for his life, Ittai was willing to go with him.  He was willing to live and die with him, to follow him to the ends of the earth.  We all need someone like that in our lives don’t we?  We need someone who will stand by us and believe in us, someone who will be with us through thick and thin.  It brings comfort and security, knowing that we won’t have to navigate this life alone.

Standing in Ittai’s shoes, I wonder who can count on me?  Who can count on me through thick and thin?  Am I a good friend or do I only come around when I need something?  I have to ponder this – that there are others counting on me, too.  There is someone else that needs me.  There is someone who needs my loyalty, who needs me to be a rock in their times of trouble.  It’s not just about what I need, I also have the ability to stand with others. 

There’s one last thought that came to me when reading this passage today.  Ittai could have walked away from the king.  He was free to go and live his life.  He was under no obligation.  But he only wanted to be where the king was.  He wanted no other life, even if it would have been easier.  He was willing to take the hard road if it meant being with the king.  This is the life I desire to life.  I want to be with the KING.  No matter what may come, being in His presence will trump whatever ordinary life I might have without Him.  So like Ittai, I choose today to follow the King.  I choose to wander through life with Him, going wherever He may go.

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