2007-09-13 - How Does Anyone?
Originally Published 2003-08-14
I found myself in a very interesting spot this past week. It was very late, raining steadily and dark. I was leaving the parking lot where I work after dropping a co-worker at his car. I was momentarily distracted when there was a loud bang and I was thrown up against my seat belt firmly. I had gone from 5 miles per hour to zero almost instantly. I had done the unthinkable. I had hit a light pole in a lot that I had driven out of dozens of times.
In the past I had driven away from accidents where people had hit light poles before and wondered how on Earth that had happened. Now the shoe was on the other foot. I was the one who's bumper had been moved back six inches. It had happened in an instant and I found myself where I could not have imagined I would ever be.
I can imagine that this is how David must have felt staring down the long arm and finger of Nathan back to the eyes that accused him of such treacherous behavior. In his wildest imaginations David would not have placed himself in that situation; not in a million years. And here he was with no argument and no defense. Nathan's words stuck like pitch.
Before we think something is beyond us, or that we would never be in that place, or that someone has done something so senseless - stop. Whether or not they got there by their own hand or they found themselves as I did, completely stunned, stop and realize that there but for the grace of a most merciful God go I.
If we can teach ourselves to think more that way, it becomes much easier to be compassionate. This may be especially true if we are confronted with a situation we may find distasteful or otherwise unacceptable. David never expected to be at the end of Nathan's finger. A friend of mine never expected to become a Mom before she was married. And you and I may never know when that light pole will appear out of nowhere on a dark night.
Gal 6:1-5 Brethren, even if a man is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, lest you too be tempted. 2 Bear one another's burdens, and thus fulfill the law of Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another. 5 For each one shall bear his own load. (NAS)
Grace & Peace,