Pondering for Monday, September 23, 2019

Daily Office Readings for Monday of Proper 20 Year 1

AM Psalm 80; PM Psalm 77, [79] 2 Kings 5:1-19; 1 Cor. 4:8-21; Matt. 5:21-26

“But Naaman became angry and went away, saying, ‘I thought that for me he would surely come out, and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, and would wave his hand over the spot, and cure the leprosy!”  (2 Kings 5:11)

Naaman is just like the rest of us. We not only know what we want God to do for us, we also know how we want God to do it.

Yet this is the same God who always surprises.  This is the same God who led the Israelites through the sea in search of the Promised Land.  Now this Commander of the army is acting on the information of a nameless servant girl who tells of a prophet who can cure him.

In our Second King’s story today God is using Elisha to cure Naaman but Naaman already has it in his head what his cure should look like. Also, Naaman has an ego.  He is irritated that Elisha does not come out to meet him but rather sends his servant out to give him instruction. It seems to Naaman that who he is (Naaman) is more important than what he wants (to be healed). Naaman says, “I thought that for me he would come out…”  Sometimes a few of us are Naaman.

I have been with people who ignored receptionist and clerks by walking past them and through doors to whomever they wanted to see. They, like Naaman, feel privileged or entitled. If I asked them about their lack of protocol the response usually equates to “I thought that for me,” it would be okay.

In this healing story it takes another nameless servant (besides the servant girl) to make Naaman realize that in order for him to be healed he first has to humble himself to obey the simple instruction he was given. The solution was not hard but it required Naaman to put aside what he thought was important and to do as he was told.  This is yet another example of God working for us, through us. What is God trying hard to do for you through nameless people?

Let us hear what the Spirit is saying to and through God’s people and then ponder anew what the Almighty can do.  John+

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