The simple believes everything, but the prudent looks where he is going.   Proverbs 14:15, RSV


I look around at people who are stunned at the possibility that cheating could have occurred in our recent election. These same folks seem to also be surprised that the ones who got the results they wanted are not at least wanting to get to the bottom of these accusations of wrong doing. They seem genuinely perplexed that those who won by suspicious circumstances do not want to investigate to make sure that the right thing is done.


Are you among these bewildered souls? Are you surprised?


I have noted through the years how often the righteous are surprised at the capacity of the unrighteous to do evil. People tend to assign the same set of values to others that they themselves have, so an honest man is often surprised when a dishonest man lies to his face. Part of maturity is recognizing that the righteous and the wicked do not often act the same way. Part of wisdom is to recognize the trap we fall into when we assign our values to people who clearly do not share our faith.


For example, would you ever vote for someone who promises to uphold someone's right to terminate the life of a baby? If not, you should not be surprised when those who would use devious methods to gain power. Would you support someone's right to enter a country in an illegal manner and then expect the legal citizens of that country to pay for their illegal behavior? If not, you should not be surprised when those who do stand for these types of "rights to do wrong"  bend the rules a bit to get their man or woman in positions of power. It is the same for our differences in whether people have a right to burn and loot and injure the innocent, in their quest to get what they want. We could list a thousand specific examples, but hopefully we see the point: The unrighteous do not have the same standards that the righteous do... so don't be surprised.


And we shouldn't resort to evil in response to evil. While we see the merit in that truth, we are left with the thorny issue of what to do. Perhaps we can start with this plan of action: If we have been participating and supporting evil ourselves, we can repent. If we have gotten away from reading the Word of God, which contains the answers to all of our problems, then we can get back to our studies. If we have stopped praying as much, we can start praying more - this would be a good time to do so. If we have stopped worshipping for what ever reason, we can get back to the worship.


But, if these things don't sound very appealing, then I guess we could go to plan B... we can just continue to be surprised while we witness our once great nation going the way of the unrighteous, because we are just too simple to do anything else.


The Prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it. Proverbs 27:12, NIV