Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Judges 16-18

I don't get it today.  That's my initial reaction to Judges 16-18.  I just don't understand what Samson sees in this Delilah girl.  She's so selfish and greedy, and she stomps all over this fallen hero's heart until he is a slave to the very people he has already defeated.  And then, there's Micah and the Levite priest who are doing the very things with idols and worship that Moses, Joshua, and God Himself commanded all of Israel NOT to do.  Oh, and how could we forget the misplaced and misunderstanding Danites?  God has been very specific in giving them all the land they need, but they talk themselves into settling somewhere else where the grass is greener.  What a mess!

I sit here in a state of disbelief for a minute trying to make sense of it all.  It's all tragic really, how lost God's people really are.  It's easy for us to see, as Bible reading Christians in the 21st century and nearly impossible for the Israelites to realize in the moment.  The world of hurt they find themselves is a result of their own weaknesses and self-destructive habits.  It's been 300 years since Israel settled in the Promise Land, and these bad habits are having a build-up effect, snowballing over time.  

How does this happen to God's beloved people who are wonderfully and fearfully made by His own hands?

I found the answer right in the middle of our reading for today.

In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as they saw fit.

This verse is jumping off the page at me!  In those days and in these, things aren't so different really.  Even as God's people, saved by the blood of Christ, we are easily distracted from our true King, Lord of Lords.  

God is calling us to stay focused and careful.  

We rationalize, marginalize, interpret, justify, and convince ourselves that we know what we are doing, where we are going, and how we are going to get there.  We tell ourselves our way is the way.  We head in that direction until...until our way lands us on our knees.

In reality, that's where God wants us in the first place.  

33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

That's how He saves us, fills us, and renews us with His powerful and perfect love.

A prayer for today-

Dear God,

Thank You for using Your story and Holy Word to fill me with Your guidance.  Thank You for Your grace that saves me, Your powerful and unconditional love that sustains me, and Your Spirit that empowers me to shine Your light into the world.

I pray for Your Kingdom to come and Your will to be done.

You are Lord of Lords, King of Kings, my Savior.

In the name of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit I pray,

Grace and peace,
*This post is part of A Mind-Maker-Upper's Everyday Reading Project.  Click here to read more.

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