Glimpses of grace seen in the everyday

Archive for June, 2012

Fifteen Years to Live

If I knew that I had 15 more years to live, how would I spend them?  That’s what King Hezekiah was told by God when he begged to be spared from a deadly disease.   (2 Kings 20:1-6)

Would my priorities change?  Would I use the first five or ten for myself, promising God the final years?  Or would I start now to pursue God with my all my heart, soul, and strength?  It’s an interesting question. 

But the truth is, I might have 30 more years or just a few days or hours.  The question at hand is how to use this one day I have.

Only one life, ‘twill soon be past;
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

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Pardon, your character is showing

What happens in me when things go well? When a crisis comes?  When I’m on my own?  What do my responses say about my true character?

The “report cards” of the kings of Israel and Judah are very revealing.  Here are some of the more dramatic ones.

When things went well…

…Solomon turned to worship his many wives’ foreign gods.  (1 Kings 11)

…Amaziah, after trusting God for an amazing victory over an enemy, brought back that enemy’s worthless gods, adopted them as his own and worshipped them. (2 Chronicles 25:5-16)

…Josiah enjoyed a peaceful reign, radically committed to the Lord all the days of his life.  Ahhh!  Smile  (2 Kings 22:1-23:25)

When a crisis came…

…Asa, previously a very godly king, appealed to powerful neighbors instead of God, and then became a tyrant to his own people.  When God punished him with illness, he turned to doctors instead of back to the Lord and died a painful death. (2 Chronicles 16)

…Jehoshaphat went straight to God for help.  God took over from there and turned the enemies on one another.  All Jehoshaphat’s people had to go was march into battle with songs instead of swords, then haul away the plunder.    (2 Chronicles 20)  Hezekiah’s story is very similar.  (2 Kings 19:1, 14-36)

When a godly mentor was taken away…

–Joash enthusiastically served God as long as the priest (his guardian and mentor) was around.  BUT when that man died, Joash turned right around and abandoned God, turning that same enthusiasm to the worship of heathen gods. (2 Chronicles 24) How could he?!?  Sad smile

–Uzziah “followed God during the lifetime of Zechariah, who taught him how to honor God….BUT once he became powerful, his pride destroyed him. He disobeyed the LORD his God.” (2 Chronicles 26:5, 16 NET) 

What about me? What is my true character that will show through when my circumstances change—or if they don’t?  Who am I, really?

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