Category Archives: 2 KIngs

Following Dad’s Lead

“He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, just as his father David had done.”  2 Kings 18:3.

My father had a Godly influence on my life.  I was blessed to have that.

My father was a minister and as a preacher’s kid I was a regular attendee in many church services.  Not always happy to be there!

I was taught by him at an early age about hell and heaven.  I learned Scripture and I was familiar with Bible stories.  I thought that was enough…..but it wasn’t.

I became a believer as a pre-teen. One night I was awake in fear of death.  I wasn’t sick. I just began to realize that if I should die before I woke up, I was going to wake up in hell.  The realization scared me plenty!

All the times that my father had preached on the topic suddenly jelled into an understanding that I was hopelessly lost.  I needed to be saved.  Thankfully, in God’s providence, my dad had explained what I needed to do.  And so, I confessed that I was a sinner and believed that Jesus had died for my sins.  I invited Him into my life.  This was the blessed result for me of being raised by a Godly father.

Hezekiah was also blessed to have a Godly father like David.  Hezekiah knew, from his father’s example, what it took to please God; to do what “was right in the eyes of the Lord.”

David wasn’t a perfect father but Hezekiah, thanks to God’s intervention, was able find the lifestyle he needed to live out to please God.

I am a father, grandfather, uncle, and father-in-law.  I must set a Godly example.  There must be a willingness to follow God’s lead in my life.  Others in my family are watching.  Some of them may be learning.  Will I give the Hezekiah’s in my life what they need to please Him?  How about you?

 

 

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Worthless pursuits lead to where?

“They followed worthless idols and themselves became worthless.” 2 Kings 17:15.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 2 Kings 17, 2 Chronicles 28, Psalm 46, and James 3.

Tough read.

This line is obviously true.

If I chase things that are worthless, then I am heading in that same direction.

Think of the time wasted.  The brain cells compromised.

How often I know what I’m doing/watching is worthless, yet I persist.  That inner voice warns me, but I choose not to listen.  O wretched man that I am!

My life must be lived attached tightly to God.  I cannot venture into paths of my own choosing.  God is not mocked.

I must set my day on a course that will honor Him. There is nothing to be gained away from Him that is lasting.

“Lord, I need You every second.  I cannot trust my own intuitions.  Keep me from worthless pursuits.  I want to honor You in everything I do.  Guide me, O thou great Jehovah.”

Can we expect God’s blessing when we chase worthless things?

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Is God listening?

“Then Jehoahaz sought the Lord’s favor, and the Lord listened to him, for he saw how severely the king of Aram was oppressing Israel.”  2 Kings 13:4.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 2 Kings 13-14, 2 Chronicles 25, and 2 Timothy 3.

God knows what is going on. That is such a great comfort.  I don’t have to get God up to speed on anything.

Often, I pray as if He is out in the yard when something happens in the house.

The unforgettable piece is that God’s people win in the end.  There is a Hallmark ending!  The troubles and disconnects of our lives will all vanish.

But in the meantime, we live and sometimes suffer in this world.  Yet God is watching.  Jehoahaz knew this and therefore “sought” God’s favor.  Note that Jehoahaz did not “demand” it.  There is a huge difference.

God could see that His people were being treated cruelly and agreed to put an end to it.

When things are going badly I can be thankful that God is aware of it.  I must remember that all the details are beyond me, but God knows them.

Jesus asked His Father for another way and it didn’t happen.  I can ask for things to stop, understanding that His Will is the final best choice.

“Lord Your Way is the best way.  I ask You for the salvation of my relatives apart from You.  They need You.  Their salvation is beyond anything I can do.  I need Your intervention in each life.  Please, Father.”

Do you think you’re praying to no one?  God is listening.  Pray away!

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Where is God?

“And Elisha prayed, ‘Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.’ Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” 2 Kings 6:17.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 2 Kings 6-7, 2 Chronicles 20, and 1 Timothy 3.

I am filled with the Holy Spirit.

I don’t have to look out into the fields around me to know that He is present.  He is, in fact, omnipresent.

Jesus said that He would send His Holy Spirit to be among us………and He has.

I believe that He is with me as I write this entry.  That forces me to want to produce something that pleases Him.  I pray that He would prevent me from misrepresenting Him.

I must learn to live in His presence.  I must alert myself to His ongoing nearness.  It surely puts me on notice to closely examine my plans and my behavior.

“I thank You, Father, for Your presence.  You are not a God far off.  Guide me this day to Your Ways.  Prevent me from misrepresenting You in word and deed.  Open the eyes of those apart from You to Your nearness and to Your reality in their midst.  I love You, Lord.”

Where is God in your life?

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God is not in synch with me!

“But Naaman went away angry and said, ‘I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy.” 2 Kings 5:11.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 2 Kings 4-5, Psalm 83, and 1 Timothy 2.

Talk about having an incorrect preconceived notion!

Naaman preplanned how God would work.  What could go wrong with that arrangement?  Everything!

We do not know what God will do.  We do not know how God will do things.  Naaman realized neither of this.

I think of the situation with Paul in the New Testament.  One time he is imprisoned, and his prayers lead to a remarkable escape.  In another place, less preached about, Paul is kept under house arrest for two years.  In both cases, prayers are being offered.  God chooses to work differently.

My frequent mistake is telling God what needs to be taken care of.  Why is this folly?  God already knows everything, including what I’m telling Him about.  God knows my situation and He knows the best solution.  His solution may be exactly what I wanted it to be.  But I make the “Naaman” mistake when I preconceive what God should/will do.  I need to trust that He knows best.  I need to trust that He has my very best interests in mind.  His Way is the best way.

“Lord, forgive me for bossing You around.  It is folly of the highest order on my part.  Thank You for Your omnipresence.  You are on the scene.  Help me to live/pray accordingly.”

Do you “boss” God around?  Learn from Naaman.

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Easy for Him

“For this is what the Lord says: You will see neither wind nor rain, yet this valley will be filled with water, and you, your cattle and your other animals will drink.  This is an easy thing in the eyes of the Lord; he will also deliver Moab into your hands.”  2 Kings 3:17-18.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading; 2 Kings 1-3, Psalm 82, and 1 Timothy 1.

Stuck in a desert against a large army, God tells them what will happen.

Yet another story of God being God.  God showing up in the details of someone’s life.  God doing amazing things and not breaking a sweat doing it!

What size is the God that we serve? Large?  Small?

I read a story like today’s and marvel at what God can do….easily.

Then I look at family situations and I resume seeing “large” obstacles and a “not-so-large” God.

What is wrong with this picture?  I need to establish the fact that I have a GREAT God.  A God that doesn’t shrink.  That isn’t overwhelmed by anything that is in my midst.

I must always trust that He is able to do great things.  My trust must be in “that” God not the One that seems to fluctuate in my thinking.

“Lord, You are great and I am unworthy.  Forgive me for underestimating Your capabilities.  Allow me to commit my “mountains” to You optimistically knowing that they aren’t mountains to You.  I love You, Father.”

God is not overwhelmed by any of our problems.  Why then should we be………unless we aren’t trusting Him.

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No stone unturned!

“Then he went back to Jerusalem.”  2 Kings 23:20.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 2 Kings 23, 2 Chronicles 35, and John 7.

Talk is cheap but no one could ever accuse King Josiah of just being a talker.

Once Josiah realized that his predecessors had angered God, he did everything he could think of to please God.  Talk about going in the opposite direction!

And this wasn’t just a “scorched earth” approach in which everything was trashed.  Josiah was selective.  There were reasons for the things that were destroyed getting destroyed.  They had been places and people who had been connected to specific godless things.

There is also an example of something being spared: A prophet’s bones were spared because he had spoken out against the wrongs being done.  So Josiah was thorough and selective.

When I look at my own life, I need to be at least as thorough as Josiah in recognizing sin and removing the sinful areas.

Am I willing to stop doing things, no matter what they are?  God can work best with a surrendered life.

I must be on the lookout for counterfeit gods.  What do I think about?  Where is my money going?  What makes me happy?  Angry?  How do I use my time?  Answering those questions could well unearth the counterfeit gods in my life.

I come face-to-face (too) frequently with the anger one.  Why did I lose it over this?  It is almost always caused by my overriding selfishness.  I want my way.  No consideration is given to what God might want……….and off I go.  Sadly, in retrospect.

“Lord, another good role model text.  Help me to clear away that which displeases You.  I want those things, those influences, removed.  I want to be totally right with You so that I can serve You rightly and not with unneeded baggage slowing me down or diverting my attention.  I am truly needy, Father.  Help me, I beg.”

Am I willing to let God clear out my godless distractions?

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