Throughout many years of Bible study, I've often heard David referred to as being 'after God's own heart.' To be transparent, I always believed that it meant he took after God as in tendencies. He & God had similar traits the way a child takes 'after' a parent.
Recently, I was listening to a sermon on the radio regarding this very sentence. The man preaching defined 'after' as a chasing or seeking. David sought out the Heart of God. God saw past David's murderous & adulterous deeds to see a heart that wanted to please God.
This made much more sense to me. David wasn't perfect. He did wretched things like we all do. But, in his heart, he wanted to choose God's way. He was human & flawed, but forgiven.
It boggles me how much patience Our Father has for us. David screwed up. But he knew the path to take. After every stumble, he'd step back into the Light.
It strengthens me to know, that my flaws arent't fatal. I want to be 'after God's own heart', too. Daily, like David, I stumble. Often, I face plant. But, at the end, I desire to hear God say that He knows, but He saw me chasing His Heart.