First things first welcome back to our daily devotionals. This time around we have a team to be more sustainable from the off-set; if you would like to perhaps pen a devotional yourself please get in touch with me (Daniel Alcock). I really look forward to hearing from all the different voices in our Church community.
Read 2 Kings 5-8
Today’s passage covered one of my favourite Old Testament stories, that is Naaman being healed of leprosy. Typically a diagnosis of leprosy was synonymous with becoming an outcast of society; we caught a glimpse of that further in the reading (2 Kings 7:3-5). Yet in this instance, through Naaman’s military success (5:1) his illness was somewhat overlooked; so much so his line manager valued him enough to entertain the tale of a servant-girl offering a pathway to a potential cure.
The details of this servant girl are slim, yet she was pivotal to bringing about God’s plan for Naaman. All we know of her is that she was taken captive from Israel (5:2) and was, therefore, a Jew. I bet given what she had gone through (took captive) and how she was living (in captivity) she felt bewildered as to what God was doing in her life. Yet her faithful witness to her God, and not abandoning Him despite personal adversity led towards Naaman coming to faith and being healed. This woman was still used by God. Despite potentially feeling let down by God, she believed her God could still heal Naaman (5:3).
The acknowledgement that God can be doing different things in different lives is both humbling and perplexing. More-so when someone else could be experiencing a more favourable season in life over individual personal circumstances. This woman didn’t keep what she believed about God to herself, she trusted that Naaman could benefit from the goodness of God. I hope when the chips are down for me, I’d still proclaim the goodness of God to others.
Looking at the wider picture Naaman wasn’t a Jew and yet was still able to join the people of God. (I love his request in 17-18). Many present the Old Testament as God is the God of the Jews until Jesus came along, which is when God suddenly welcomed everybody. This is an oversimplification. God chose the Jews to be His chosen people through who God would bless the world. There are several instances in the Old Testament of non-Jews joining the family of God before Jesus’ life, ministry, death and resurrection. The story of Naaman is one of them.
I’m sure we can all agree that life is abnormal right now. While we may not be in captivity, I doubt the current living conditions were on anyone’s plan going into 2020. Just like this unnamed woman I am confident that God can use us despite the circumstances we find ourselves within. Let us ask God afresh to be used by Him, for Him. Perhaps, just perhaps, God will send us our very own Naaman to point towards God.
Take this devotional further with: