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[David] said to his men, “The Lord forbid that I should do such a thing to my master, the Lord’s anointed, or lift up my hand against him; for he is the anointed of the Lord.”

Read the entire passage: 1 Samuel 24


David is hiding in a cave when he has the perfect opportunity to get revenge on Saul. Saul is vulnerable “relieving himself” and David has a lot of pain to atone for—Saul had tried to murder David on many occasions and had now driven him to hide for his life in caves. Even David’s men encourage him to kill Saul. But David rebukes them. He stops what he’s doing and recognizes who Saul is and what role he plays in God’s story. Instead of taking the responsibility for exacting justice, he trusts God for justice. David lets go of control.

Romans 12.19 tells us to not take revenge but to trust God to avenge. In this story, David stops to allow God room to work. David acknowledges the humanity of Saul and he reminds his men how Saul was anointed by the Lord. We too should learn to see our “enemies” through the lens of their identity—made in the image of God. We should see others as God sees them.


Take time today to pray to God asking for the ability to see others as made in God’s image. Ask him for the grace to let go of control of the situation. As you pray, open your palms to physically signify letting go of control and surrendering to God’s will.