There are winners and there are losers. In fact, when two people go up against each other in a race – one will win and the other will lose. And, so it was in our presidential election. We had two candidates at election time. America knew there would be a winner and a loser. But, I think what has astounded me is that the losing side have been very poor losers. In other words, they are angry that their candidate lost. Consequently, our new president has been treated horribly by the opposing side. I have never witnessed disrespect for the office and for the authority that our United States President holds like I have seen in these past months.
In 2 Samuel 16:1-14, David is King over Jerusalem. His son, Absalom has gone up against him. His very own son is out to kill his father – “My own son seeks my life” (v.11). And, now David is on the run. While David and his troops are traveling, they come upon a man who comes running out of his house and begins cursing David, “Out! Out! Murderer! Scoundrel!” (v. 7). David could have killed him right there and right then, but instead, moves on while the man continues to follow him cursing at him and throwing stones (v.13). When David and his men finally arrived at the Jordan “they were weary” (v.14). I read this as being weary from all the drama and hate they had to put up with along the way…not just weary from the travel itself. When we treat others with hate – calling each other names, it wears that person out! It’s very stressful, especially when you feel you are doing the best that you can under the given circumstances.
As Christians, we are called to respond in love, not hate. That doesn’t mean you necessarily must “agree” with everything the winner says, but it does mean that you respect the office and the place of authority that person holds. You would want the same if in the same position. Treat others the same way you would want to be treated.
Let us pray…Lord God, our savior who loves all people. Help us to love others, to respect others in their place of authority. Forgive us for the way we have treated others. Open our hearts – change our hearts to love others the way you love us. Amen.