As a young man, I always thought I had to make a choice between "independence" or "dependence".
And given that choice, I was going to work hard to be independent. See, to me, dependence felt weak. Independence felt strong. Dependent people could only do what others allowed or enabled or granted. Independent people, well, they made things happen. Depependent people could not really have a will of their own, at least not without living in constant disappointment, because they could not exert that will into reality. I didn't want to be that. So if I had to choose, I chose independence, and tried to become strong and able to have a will of my own along with the power to bring it about.
It took me a while, but eventually, God taught me there was a third choice. It was introduced to me in a word that I had never heard before: INTER-dependence.
Interdependence is unlike dependence in that interdependent people have a will of their own and resources to do things. But it is unlike independence in that interdependent people willingly allow their own will to be influenced and shaped by God and others, and co-operates in submission to partnership with them.
For those who are keeping up with our 2020 Bible Project, we just read the first ten chapters of the Old Testament book of 2 Samuel. This finishes up the 24-chapter-long transition from the reign of King Saul to the reign of King David that spans portions of both 1 & 2 Samuel. Scripture really takes its time comparing what was wrong with King Saul, and what was right about King David, in God's eyes.
This is what reminded me of the difference between independence and interdependence.
Today, I draw your attention to the difference between the "House of Saul" and the "House of David". The long war between them reflects much more than a game of thrones, and who will be king. It also reflects two very different ways of leading and living.
This story makes it clear: God desires one way. And God rejects the other. I think you'll agree with me that we live in "House of Saul" culture here in America, but we are called to live in the "House of David" way as Christians.
It is interesting to note that Jesus will be referred to as the "Son of David". Why? Well, one of the reasons is because David's way exhibited here is also Christ's way.