By Julie Ackerman Link

Blessed be the Lord, who has pleaded the cause of my reproach. —1 Samuel 25:39

Playwright and US Congresswoman Clare Boothe Luce (1903–1987) once said, “No good deed goes unpunished.” Sadly, it sometimes seems as if this aphorism is true.

David, soon to be king of Israel, had an experience that corroborates this idea. While hiding from Saul, he and his men watched over the property of a rich landowner named Nabal. But later, when David asked a favor of Nabal, he was met with scorn. “Surely in vain I have protected all that this fellow has,” said David. “He has repaid me evil for good” (1 Sam. 25:21).

Before David could carry out revenge, Nabal’s wife intervened and kept David from acting rashly. Soon, God struck Nabal dead (v.38). Then David praised God for keeping him from evil and for returning “the wickedness of Nabal on his own head” (v.39).

Perhaps you’ve had an experience when kindness was repaid with ingratitude, a generous gift was treated as an entitlement, kind actions were interpreted as an attempt to control, or well-intended advice was received with scorn.

David’s story reminds us that even when it seems as if we’re being repaid with evil for doing good, we don’t have to take matters into our own hands; we can trust God with the outcome.

One day God will right every wrong.

Devotional forwarded to you by:


NCCP Ecumenical Ministry – Church of the Risen Lord

University of the Philippines, Diliman Campus, QC


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