22. Do not judge

Last time we saw how courageous David truly was. When his men urged him to get even with Saul and to kill him, he refused. He knew better than to touch the anointed of God. He made the wise choice to rather leave it in the hands of our Almighty God!

David however still lived in exile. Even though he refused to kill Saul, Saul was still not on friendly terms with David. So David went to live in the wilderness of Paran. Now there also lived a man close by named Nabal. He was wealthy and during that time that David lived close to him, he and his men protected the flocks of Nabal. David never stole anything from him; in fact he was like a wall of protection around Nabal's flock.

As it happened one day David sent 10 of his men to Nabal to ask if he would give them anything for the Jewish feast at hand. David told the men to be kind and to bless the house of Nabal and to just ask for whatever he found in his heart to give. But Nabal wasn't very kind in return:

"Who is David, and who is the son of Jesse? There are many servants nowadays who break away each one from his master. Shall I then take my bread and my water and my meat that I have killed for my shearers, and give it to men when I do not know where they are from?" 1 Samuel 25:10, 11

Nabal jumped to conclusions without having all the facts. He immediately assumed the worst of David without even knowing all the circumstances. He didn't even ask his shepherds if it was true that David helped them. He didn't care, he had his own opinion. And then he also was stingy and didn't want to give with a willing heart. He didn't want to share his prosperity with anyone.

Isn't it sad? Next week we will see that it didn't work out too well for Nabal in the end. God dealt with the hardness of his heart.

But are we not the same sometimes? We often jump to conclusions and form a picture in our minds concerning someone without knowing all the facts. We often judge based on one side of the story that we heard. We often times label someone just like Nabal did here. We often do not make the effort to actually hear the full story. Especially if the wrong doing involves people close to us, we must truly make an effort to hear the full story and not just jump to conclusions.

A story always has two sides that we need to hear. Always. And even then, who are we to judge? We are just the clay in the very capable hands of the Potter. Who are we to cast a sentence? Why not leave it rather to the Judge of the Universe? He alone is the One who knows the whole story, the One who knows the past, no one else truly knows. And if our judicial system is necessary in certain instances, then it is fine, but leave the judgment out of your heart. The only one you are truly hurting is yourself.

And then when God prods you to give to that party, then give, give with a willing heart. Whether it is forgiveness that you need to give or whether it is a blanket or food. Whatever the Lord places on your heart. He loves a cheerful giver and will bless you in abundance for it!

Father, please help us to stay neutral and to see certain circumstances from Your perspective. We need Your perspective on things. You and You alone are the true Judge. We are so sorry that we assume that role so many times. Lead us unto Your pathway and prompt us to give where we should. We will always follow You. Amen

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