Obedience When It Hurts..

2nd March

But Elisha sent a messenger out to him with this message: “Go and wash yourself seven times in the Jordan River. Then your skin will be restored, and you will be healed of your leprosy.” But Naaman became angry and stalked away. “I thought he would certainly come out to me!” he said. “I expected him to wave his hand over the leprosy and call on the name of the Lord his God and heal me!””

1 Kings 5:10-11

Naaman was a great commander, an Aramean General. Through him, God had given Aram many great victories. However, he had a disease, leprosy. Desperate for a cure, he traveled to the King of Israel to heal him from his leprosy. From there, he travelled to Elisha the prophet. Interestingly, Naaman had with him 750 pounds of silver, 150 pounds of gold, and ten sets of fine clothing. He wanted to show the wealth of his King and his expectation was that money could buy his healing.

Instead, God through Elisha commanded Naaman to go and wash 7 times in the Jordan River. Yet this was not what Naaman wanted to hear. He wanted Elisha to wave his hands and heal his sickness. Perhaps Naaman had heard of Elisha’s previous miracles..? After much discussion with his officers, who advised him to listen to Elisha, Naaman was finally obedient and went to the Jordan and dipped himself in the river 7 times. Surely enough he was healed and went back to Elisha declaring that Elisha’s God was the one true God and that he would never again worship or offer burnt sacrifices to another god again.

‘Suppose Naaman had dipped himself in the Jordan only six times. He would have remained a leper. God gave specific instructions, and the healing came by obeying down to the exact number.’1 We too are faced with the same challenge, to obey God even when we don’t understand, even when it’s hard and even when it’s not what we expect we should do! We must remember that God’s actions are ‘not bound by out expectations, and His manner of working always remains His choice’2. Our job is to obey! God always knows best.

1David Jeremiah: Daily Devotions, 9th January 2016

2Everyday Men’s Bible, PG 505 NLT version

God’s Mercies Are New Every Morning

13th -14th June

Weekend Edition

Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting in you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you.”

Psalm 143:8

It’s amazing that as the dawn bring a new day, so the mercy of the Lord is new every morning. Yesterday sorrows are gone and today is a new day. The past is behind and we look to the future.

Its so great to remind ourselves in the morning of God’s greatness and unfailing love. It gives us such a boost to know we are supported by a God whose love is unfailing. Furthermore it’s so great to know that we can start our day off with the trust and security that we are in the hands of Almighty God. Even when we feel like we are boxed in by life’s problems, or surrounded and knocked down by enemies, as was David in this Psalm, we can take full courage and assurance that God is fighting for us and if our trust is in Him, He will show us where to walk.

It is so important to remind ourselves of the unfailing love of God, early in the morning. It’s more important than breakfast or our morning cup of coffee. It is what truly sets us up for the day. It gives life to our bodies knowing that we are loved by the creator of the universe. It encourages our souls to know that we are forgiven by the love of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. It gives us energy to know that God’s mercies are new every morning because He is a faithful God.

Before you start your day each morning take some time to think on God’s love. Let the knowledge of His love be your spiritual breakfast that feeds your soul and guides your steps. May we give ourselves fully to Him.