Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. ~Psalm 37:1
Dealing with people can be a blessing. It can also be a trying experience, as some personalities choose to be adversarial, annoying, contentious, disloyal, undermining, or difficult to work with. Some types of personalities can just get under your skin. In other words, they test your patience and lead to fretting on our part. Three times in the opening verses of this psalm, David addresses the challenge we face when someone gets under our skin.
We see the cause.
Fretting can mean becoming vehemently angry and hot. We have a saying that something made us “hot under the collar.” Fretting is when we get hot under the collar because of someone else’s bad intentions. David speaks of evildoers, workers of iniquity, and those who prosper in their way and bring wicked devices to pass. David’s personal experience with these kinds of people would include Ahithophel in his treacherous betrayal and Shimei, who cursed David and threw stones at him. We fret about people who are unrelenting in their attacks on us. We fret about people who are wrong in their motive and seem to be succeeding. All of us are susceptible to fretting.
We see the conditions.
Fretting is when people get under our skin! We get annoyed. We get angry, fume, and eventually become vengeful. We are ready to retaliate at the next confrontation. We toss and turn at night and lose sleep. We become distracted from our priorities. We blame these people for our slip-ups. We develop a cynical spirit and say things that are sarcastic, mean, and cutting. We become distrustful of other people and even withdraw from fellowship where these people appear. When we allow a fretting spirit to overcome us, we decline spiritually and even lose our testimony. Fretting is the work of the flesh and devil to get the best of our spirit and rob us of our joy. If any of these conditions have been present in your life, it very well could be that you have been fretting.
We see the counsel.
The good news is that we can achieve victory over fretting! David gives us five sentences that help us win over fretting. First, we must trust in the Lord and do right. Trust means to have faith that God has something good that He will accomplish in us. Second, delight yourself in the Lord. This means to live a life that is obedient, is in the Spirit, and pleases God. Only then can God give us the sincere desires of our heart. Third, we must commit our way to the Lord and trust Him. This means that we must humbly give our fretting to the Lord in prayer and have faith that He will vindicate us. Fourth, we must rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him. The only cure for a restless spirit is resting in the Lord. Last, we must let go of our anger and forsake a spirit of retaliation.
Are you fretting? Are there personalities that get under your skin? Follow the counsel of David and claim the victory that God wants you to have.
Have a restful God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Psalm 119:89-176