Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash.
What do people see in us? What we “show and tell” in our lives to those around us unveil the state of our heart.
King Hezekiah was a good Judean king until the latter part of his life. He was spared from death when he humbled himself before God. The Lord divinely extended King Hezekiah’s life by 15 years and delivered Jerusalem from the Assyrians.
All seemed to be going well for him until a visit by the Babylonian envoys.
“Hezekiah received the (Babylonian) envoys and showed them all that was in his storehouses – the silver, the gold, the spices and the fine olive oil – his armoury and everything found among his treasures. There was nothing in his palace or in all his kingdom that Hezekiah did not show them” (2 Kings 20:13, NIV)
If all people see is our status, but not the God whom we worship, then we have missed His purpose for our lives.
He showed them everything – all the splendour and treasures of his kingdom … except his God.
The envoys’ visit revealed a prideful spirit in Hezekiah. With the nation of Judah experiencing stability and prosperity, he succumbed to the belief that these were attained through his strength alone.
Blinded by his growing reputation and greatness as a king, Hezekiah took God’s intervention in his life for granted. As a result of his vanity, his kingdom was eventually plundered by Babylon as the prophet Isaiah had told him it would.
There is nothing wrong for us to be placed in a higher station of life as a result of hard work and blessings from God.
As we enjoy God’s gifts – be it material wealth, career advancement, or power and influence over others – we must not be trapped by them.
Instead, we fix our eyes on God, who is the far more precious treasure.
As we enjoy God’s gifts – be it material wealth or career advancement – we must not be trapped by them.
Hezekiah’s story reminds us not to be consumed by our accomplishments, but by God. Achievements and riches may impress man, but they are transient and certainly do not impress God.
If all that people see in our lives are our successes, status or wealth, but not the God whom we love and worship, then we have missed His purpose for our lives.
If there is something that we need to boast about, let us boast about the Lord.
As the prophet Jeremiah exhorts us:
“This is what the Lord says: ‘Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,’ declares the Lord.” (Jeremiah 9:23-24, NIV)
This was written for and first published on Cru Singapore. It is republished with permission.
Reflection and Discussion
- Read and reflect on 2 Kings 20:13. Is there a common factor among the items he is showing? What do you make of Hezekiah’s exhibition?
- From the eyes of your family members, friends, strangers, what do you think your life shows and tells?
- Pray afresh to offer all you have to the Lord for His kingdom purposes. Ask for a deep desire to boast only in the Lord!