1 Samuel 26:1-6
Saul was after David. He was literally chasing him down. David had done absolutely nothing wrong. Saul was just jealous and paranoid. But David was in trouble. That is what makes this story so surprising – David finally had Saul in a place where David could end his own troubles by ending Saul’s life. But he doesn’t do it. He holds back, not because he loves Saul, but because he fears and respects God. Saul was God’s choice for king and David had faith in God that He would and could take care of Saul.
Oh those are juicy moments when we have the goods on someone else, especially someone in a position to affect our lives. We feel powerful, finally on top. We can taste the temptation to fire back, to lash out, to take our revenge. Smart people say that resentment is the kind of poison that we take and expect someone else to die. In the end, we get hurt.
God gave David pause that night. God intervened that night. David’s dark side lost the battle that night. There would be more battles to come and his dark side would not always lose but this time, it did. And rather than remembering David as a godly soldier and king who respected God and spared Saul, he would have been just another power hungry and bloodthirsty tyrant out to get his.
Let us pray: Dear Lord, so often we are tempted to take our frustrations and pain out on other people, especially those against whom we have long held resentments. Come to us in those moments, helping us remember that following you takes us down roads of forgiveness, understanding, and restraint. In Jesus’ name. Amen.