It was so strange. I was having a pleasant conversation with some people and we talked for some time. Then it was necessary to voice a safety concern about a certain object we were discussing and I was considering buying. It wasn’t even political.
Yet in a split second the person erupted in anger. I was stunned. The situation did not call for that whatsoever. And my thought was this:
We are becoming monsters.
If you joke with someone they are offended. If you say the slightest thing wrong people explode.
Later on I was thinking how this is a season of “the unveiling.” In the last four years of personal trial and a world that has become off-kilter, I’ve seen people I’ve known all my lives do things and respond in ways I never could have imagined. It’s been revealing in both good and bad ways.
It’s been good because I have begun to see what they really believe. It’s been hard as some people I no longer want around. And then some others have shown that they can be trusted in a difficult hour. But how is it you can know people for so many decades and only now see things in a new light?
It’s because people are different in different seasons of life. The season has come to not just easily hand out blanket trust, but to know what we can trust and with whom. It’s not a pulling back of trust as that would kill relationships. But rather to walk forward with greater wisdom for the times we are in.
King David experienced this too. He was sick and could have died. In fact his enemies wanted him to. David said of his enemies that…
“”My enemies speak maliciously about me: “When will he die and be forgotten?” When one of them comes to visit, he speaks deceitfully; he stores up evil in his heart; he goes out and talks. All who hate me whisper together about me; they plan to harm me.” (Ps 41:5-7).
Stores up evil in his heart. Ugh.
“Even my friend in whom I trusted, one who ate my bread, has raised his heel against me” (Ps 41:9).
Those situations stung worst of all.
David hurt. He grieved. And he trusted in the Lord to vindicate him. Strangely he based his request of the Lord’s vindication based on the fact that he cared for the poor.
At first this might seem strange. But it’s something I’ve personally observed. The Lord has such a tender heart for the severely poor, that he will bless those who help them, whether they are Christ followers or not. He is serious about the poor. Paul picked up on this two making sure that he reminded everyone to remember the poor (Gal 2:10).
But back to David. It was a really painful season. He was on his sickbed unsure if he would be healed or not. His enemies feigned concern but inwardly “stored up evil in their hearts.” Him who he thought was a friend turned against him in his greatest hour of need. And in his greatest weakness there was an unveiling of the hearts of men.
I believe the more our world unravels, the more we will have to walk through similar experiences. The revealing is already begun. Hard times are beginning to show what is in the heart of people. We are also beginning to see where people put their hope.
We just must be sure that when we are unveiled, we will find our hope in the Lord and not the governments and leaders of this world, that in others weaknesses we just love even when it costs us everything, and when people are hungry we will be generous like the widows of old.