Reading 2 Sam 10 this morning and what struck me was how something so simple that was supposed to bless and encourage someone, can be totally taken the wrong way and in that, cause major damage.
In this story King David is wanting to express kindness to Hanun whose father had died. But Hanna’s nobles, those close around him, spoke to him and suggested that in fact he wasn’t wanting to express sympathy at the death of his father, but rather exploring and spying out the city in order to overthrow it. Because of this, they attack those who are sent on behalf of King David and shame them and in return, David retaliates.
King David’s heart was to bless and to honour another King, but after that King Hanun listened to those around him, who planted thoughts other than those of David’s, and in the process caused a war.
How often do we not take things as face value but try to work something out according to the way we see it, rather than perhaps the way it was given?
How often do we listen to those around us and build up a case, rather than going to the source of the question and clarifying the intent?
How often do we completely misunderstand people because we are assuming motives of another person that are not actually there, but in actual fact, is what lies in our own heart?
The response of something so simple taken the wrong way caused a war in this situation in 2 Sam 10. In our own lives when we assume anothers' motives or actions, we too can cause rifts, misunderstandings, offences etc which in essence brings division instead of the unity that we are called to in the body of Christ.
Assuming anothers’ motives can be deadly in so many ways.
So I encourage you today not to assume other peoples motives of their actions or words. If you are concerned about something, ask the person involved. Be careful not to listen to the wrong voices either of the enemy, or those around you that don’t build up and encourage another, don’t speak faith and hope into situations, are not looking for the good in a person but continually looking at the negative. Try to keep the unity in the bond of peace and love one another, considering the other better than yourself.