Mistreated, Misjudged, and Maligned

If I were asked to give a popular title to Psalm 26, it would be: "How to Do Right When You've Been Done Wrong."

We have all been "done wrong," haven't we? Maybe that describes your circumstance right now: an intolerable working situation; a husband, wife, parent, or child who takes unfair advantage of you even when you have treated him or her kindly; a friend who has turned against you due to a misunderstanding of something you did with only the purest of motives. Such feelings grind away at our peace so severely we wonder if we can continue. Whatever the mistreatment you are having to endure, please accept this dual warning: Don't become bitter . . . Don't let it undermine your relationship with God!

David states in the opening lines of his ancient composition that he has been the victim of some undeserved wrong—followed by his determination to trust in his Lord "without wavering." Read the first verse slowly, to sense the feeling behind it:

Vindicate me, O LORD, for I have walked in my integrity,
And I have trusted in the LORD without wavering. (Psalm 26:1)

Descriptive phrase, "without wavering." The Hebrew verb means "to slip, slide, totter, shake." David says that in spite of the painful grind of mistreatment he endured, he determined to trust in his Lord and not to slip or slide under the load! That explains why he begins the psalm with such an emotional plea: "Vindicate me, O LORD." You see, by his own honest admission, he had not done something to deserve the mistreatment; though not perfect, he was still walking in integrity. That was not pride; he was stating a fact to his Lord. As he continues, he reviews the specific resolutions that kept him upright while enduring unjust attacks.

Enduring mistreatment? Don't let it make you bitter or undermine your relationship with God.

Charles R. Swindoll Tweet This

Adapted from Charles R. Swindoll, Living the Psalms: Encouragement for the Daily Grind (Brentwood, Tenn.: Worthy Publishing, a division of Worthy Media, Inc., 2012). Copyright © 2012 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights are reserved. Used by permission.

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