Are you kidding me?!?! I have said these words a time or two (or a hundred or a thousand). Well…more times than I care to remember. Can anyone else relate? These are not kind, loving, happy words. Usually these words are spoken in great disbelief, or anger, or offense. Offense can keep us from our miracles….it’s time to let go and see our miracle!
So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and waited at the door of Elisha’s house. 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 meet 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! Aren’t the rivers of Damascus, the Abana and the Pharpar, better than any of the rivers of Israel? Why shouldn’t I wash in them and be healed?” So Naaman turned and went away in a rage. But his officers tried to reason with him and said, “Sir, if the prophet had told you to do something very difficult, wouldn’t you have done it? So you should certainly obey him when he says simply, ‘Go and wash and be cured!’” So Naaman went down to the Jordan River and dipped himself seven times, as the man of God had instructed him. And his skin became as healthy as the skin of a young child’s, and he was healed! (2 Kings 5:9-14)
Are you kidding me?!?! I have said these words a time or two (or a hundred or a thousand). Well…more times than I care to remember. Can anyone else relate? These are not kind, loving, happy words. Usually these words are spoken in great disbelief, or anger, or offense.
Words are locators. Generally, I am the first one to say that you can’t read tone into the written word. Anyone ever tried to read tone into, say, a text message? You can get into trouble that way, but we see here the Word specifically says, “He went away in a rage.” The man was angry and offended. Who’s ever been there?
“I expected him to…” Naaman was a highly respected person in his country. He had people under him. He had servants to do his bidding. He had honor and prestige everywhere he went. He had a certain lifestyle of importance and privilege. And he had some expectations.
What he wanted was for the prophet himself to come out with great pomp and circumstance and make a big deal over him while he healed him. What he got was the prophet’s servant come and give him instructions to dip in a dirty river seven times.
Hmmm…the prophet’s servant. I’m sure he was thinking, “I send my servant to people I can’t be bothered to see. Who does he think I am? Who does he think he is? And the river Jordan? Hmph! I’m outta here!”
His servants talked some sense into him (see Let’s get a little crazy! to see why we need people around us) and he obeyed the prophet’s instructions and received his healing. But he was OH SO CLOSE to missing out on his miracle…..because of offense.
How many times have we gotten offended and discouraged and disappointed contending for our miracle and almost walked away..or actually walked away? “Why is it taking so long?” “You want me to give what?!? I CAN’T give! You’ve seen my checkbook balance!” “Ok Lord…what I want you to do is…” “Well…it didn’t happen last time, what’s the point!”
Don’t let offense or discouragement or disappointment keep you from your miracle. Let’s let go of our expectations of how it needs to happen and our offense at what has or hasn’t happened yet. Let’s keep pressing into what He has said. Let’s keep our eye of faith on the Miracle-Maker and trust His ways. They are so much better than ours! The miracle is right around the corner. Let’s get rid of the things holding us back and see our miracle! He is faithful Who promised!
…let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. (Hebrews 12:1-2)