Toward the end of the year, we begin to focus on the “new.” We enjoy giving and receiving “new” presents, and we look forward to the hope of a “new” year. A blank calendar page represents fresh opportunity, but what will we do with it?
Hezekiah was known as a man who received renewed opportunity from the Lord. A godly king, Hezekiah destroyed the idols in Judah (2 Kings 18:4) and trusted God (2 Kings 18:5-6).
When Assyria came knocking on the door threatening to destroy Jerusalem, Hezekiah prayed (2 Kings 19:15-19), and God spared Judah. When Hezekiah fell ill, and God told him that he would not survive, Hezekiah again went to the Lord in earnest prayer, and God extended his life by 15 years (2 Kings 20:1-6). Two challenges in Hezekiah’s day were overcome by going to God in prayer. The nation now had renewed hope, and Hezekiah especially should have been filled with new enthusiasm for the future after God spared his life.
However, when a third challenge presents itself, Hezekiah seems to display resignation and selfishness. Isaiah reveals to him that Babylon would soon come and take away the wealth of Judah, as well as Hezekiah’s own descendants (2 Kings 20:16-18). Instead of meeting this challenge with more prayer, Hezekiah says, “The word of the Lord which you have spoken is good!” and “Will there not be peace and truth at least in my days?” (2 Kings 20:19). Hezekiah was given new opportunities, but he was content to live with his personal blessings, and gave no prayer for the future generations.
As Christians, we have been cleansed by the blood of Christ, and walk in newness of life. We’ve had our lives extended eternally! But what about the lost around us? What about future generations? Will we be content with our own salvation, and give no thought, prayer, or action for the salvation of others?
What will we do with the new?
Matt Clifton Judsonia church of Christ, Judsonia, AR
Scripture of the Week
“The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The Lord is good to all, He has compassion on all He has made. All you have made will praise you, O Lord; your saints will extol you.” ~~ Psalm 145:8-10
Smile – God likes humor
How’s that again . . . ???
• His birthday has become an annual event at our house — every year or so.
• It’s amazing . . . according to the obituary column in the newspaper, people die in alphabetical order.
• He was so old, the candles cost more than the cake.
• The thing about getting old is everything is further away than it used to be.
• One thing about getting old is that you know all the answers, but nobody asks the questions.
• Getting old is merely a matter of feeling your corns more than you do your oats. (Henny Youngman)
• It’s not the days of your life that count, but the life in your days. (Adlai Stevenson)
“A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” — Proverbs 17:22
Think About It
“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” ― Dr. Seuss
“God allows us to experience the low points of life in order to teach us lessons that we could learn in no other way.” ― C.S. Lewis
“Sometimes all the therapy we need consists of simply talking to a friend.”
“Look Up! The darkest nights expose the brightest stars.”
“Within the covers of the Bible are the answers for all the problems men face.” ― Ronald Reagan
“Opportunity is most often missed because it is dressed up in overalls and looks like work.” — Thomas Edison
“The Bible is worth all the other books which have ever been printed.” – Patrick Henry