DATE WRITTEN: Thursday, 2020-07-09
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: Isaiah 38:1-6
TRANSLATION: The Message (MSG)
BIBLE TEXT: 1 ….. “God says, ‘Prepare your affairs and your family. This is it: You’re going to die. You’re not going to get well.’”
2-3 Hezekiah turned away from Isaiah and, facing the wall, prayed to God: “God, please, I beg you: Remember how I’ve lived my life. I’ve lived faithfully in your presence, lived out of a heart that was totally yours. You’ve seen how I’ve lived, the good that I have done.” And Hezekiah wept as he prayed—painful tears.
4-6 Then God told Isaiah, “Go and speak with Hezekiah. Give him this Message from me, God, the God of your ancestor David: ‘I’ve heard your prayer. I have seen your tears. Here’s what I’ll do: I’ll add fifteen years to your life. And I’ll save both you and this city from the king of Assyria. I have my hand on this city.
OBSERVATION: There are times that we feel overwhelmed with almost every aspect of life and we go to God in prayer. Children tend to recite the Lord’s Prayer or one taught to them by a parent. Some adults tend to have certain ’canned’ prayers or phrases that they use, while others tend to either pray to impress those around them, or perhaps words that they feel God wants to hear. As we meditate on the Scripture about Hezekiah, I would suggest that you look closely at how he prayed from a very passionate heart, to a God that He knew was listening, and stood ready to respond to his honest request. I wonder, how often do we truly kneel to pray from a passionate heart about something, or someone?
APPLICATION: As I pondered how we might apply this scripture to our lives today, I realized that although Hezekiah was given his death sentence, we have been warned throughout the Bible that we have no assurance as to how many more seconds, minutes, hours, days or years we have remaining as active humans here on earth. In other words, we could very easily be in the same phase of life as Hezekiah was in when Isaiah approached him with this message from God. Seriously think about this dear ones. We hear preachers and teachers say these words all the time, but look around you today and see who is absent from this life today, that you expected to spend time with for many years to come. We have no control over accidents, various diseases that have no known cure, mishaps, etc, etc. God alone has an allotted time that He has loaned us to family and friends here on earth, but one road that we all must travel is death. It behooves us to be ready for whenever our number is called. But back to Hezekiah, I believe that he still had a lot that he wanted to do in God’s service here on earth, and he was so passionate about that work that he wasted no time in getting before God in total humility and helplessness to plead for God to grant him more time. Hezekiah was totally convinced about all the kingdom work he had done, and I believe that he merely reminded God to consider that. We should be careful to note that there is no amount of bragging we could so, or self worth that we could remind God of, that would earn God’s attention. I believe that Hezekiah was merely reminding God of all the ways that He was able to use him, and that he was always faithful to respond. Can we honestly stand before God and say the same thing today? But for as morbid as this story might appear, please notice the awesome response by our God. Among all the people of the world, and among all the prayers being lifted up at that time, God heard the prayers of Hezekiah! Notice that He saw the tears and heartache that was bearing Hezekiah down. I believe that the tears resulted from the passion Hezekiah felt about his unfinished work, and resulted from the awe that resulted from him kneeling before the God of this universe, with such a special request. Most of you reading this blog no doubt kneel before God on a frequent basis and you probably have a long list of things to request of God. When last have you stood, or kneeled, before God and just worshipped Him in thankfulness for who He is and for all that He does for you? When last have you been overwhelmed with the presence of God, and just shared your heart with Him through the tears that flowed as you worshipped Him? Did this experience bring tears to your eyes and you pondered why He would even stop to listen to one such as yourself? If you knew that You were expending the last moments of your life, are there certain things and/or loved ones that would tear your heart apart as you prayed in desperation to our holy, righteous and all-powerful God? Perhaps you should consider doing that today dear friend, for we know not what tomorrow may bring.
PRAYER: Oh Lord, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth! In spite of Your majesty, I am convinced that You would have sent Your Son to die at Calvary if I was the only sinner on earth at the time. Oh the love of Jesus, that saved a wretch like me. Thank You Jesus for loving and caring for even me. Lord, today I ask that You might impress upon my readers and myself the importance of living out our commitments to You and our promises to serve You more, for we could very easily be in death’s waiting room, like Hezekiah was when he prayed. Please forgive us for procrastinating, and help us to always keep our eyes fixed on You, until We see You face to face in glory. Please work out Your plan in our lives, and may we be obedient to serve in ways that we feel led and directed by You. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!