2 Samuel 1:11-12a – Then David and all the men with him took hold of their clothes and tore them. They mourned and wept and fasted till evening for Saul and his son Jonathan. (NIV)
My friend's untimely death left her family with dozens of conflicting emotions. Several issues had divided them in one way or another. Now confronted with her unexpected death, they found themselves unable to say, "I am sorry. I love you. I wish we hadn't quarrelled." It was too late to deal with her face to face.
Most of us have experienced similar circumstances. Is there a way to deal with it? What can we do when relationships are suddenly cut off? As always, the Bible gives us answers to our questions.
The Bible tells us that David married King Saul's daughter and was best friends with Jonathon, Saul's son. Saul tried to break up these relationships, bad-mouthed David, plotted against him, and even tried to kill him.
David had good reason to be angry at Saul. However, when Saul died in battle, this is how David responded: he grieved, called his men to fast and pray, wrote a mourning song for Saul, and told the nation to memorize it. All this is recorded in 2 Samuel 1:17-27.
When life (or death) places us in unresolved circumstances, we can do what David did. He dwelt on the best of what he knew, and spoke love, praise, and kindness about his former enemy.
Romans 12:18 – If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. (NIV)
Now we know what to do if it ever happens to us.
Prayer: Lord, help us to make peace before it's too late. But, Lord, if we have left it too late, give us the grace to do what David did, or, at the very least, help us to keep our mouths shut. For Christ's sake. Amen.