Your Perspective & The Way You Treat Others

There were two totally different perspectives evident in the characters in I Samuel 30:22-23, which made all the difference both in their attitudes, and in the way they treated other people. Following the battle against the Amelekites, in which David and 400 of his men were able to defeat the enemy, and retrieve their families and possessions which had been captured, they came back across the 200 of David’s men who had been too weary to go with them to the battle. How would they treat them?

— :22 says the “wicked and worthless men” talked about how “they did not go with (literally) ME” — they were very self-centered. It was all about them, and how THEY had done what the others did not, so to them, those who stayed behind did not “deserve” what they themselves had won. They wanted to send them away empty-handed.

— :23 David, on the other hand, had a much more godly perspective. He said, “You must not do so, my brothers, with what the LORD has given us, who has kept us, and delivered into our hand the band that came against us.” Instead of focusing on what HE had “deserved” or “won”, he realized that GOD had done all this for them. Perhaps he also thought of how the people had recently complained against him, and how they had talked of stoning him, and how he called to God who strengthened him in this trial (:6)? Perhaps that episode made him much more humble, and resultantly, also more accepting and merciful towards others. And so he ordered that those who stayed behind and guarded the supply train would have an equal share with those who went to the battle, even though some of his men thought that they didn’t “deserve” it.

We each have the opportunity today to exhibit one of the same two attitudes. We can focus on “our rights” and what we “deserve”, but it will make us very self-centered, and also harsh and critical towards others. But on the other hand, we can remember what GOD has done for us, and how He has given us everything that we have, and it will cause us to be humble and thankful — and as in David’s case, it will radically change our attitude towards other people as well!

About Shawn Thomas

My blog, shawnethomas.com, provides brief devotions from own personal daily Bible reading, as well as some of my sermons, book reviews, and family life experiences.
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