Today’s blog is a guest post from author Kathy Collard Miller. This post is also a GIVEAWAY! Keep reading to the end for how to enter.
Has your own pride ever gotten in the way of something good God wanted to do in your life? Or maybe your own version of self-protection blocked something good God wanted to give you?
It happens all the time. There’s a story in the Bible that shows how a prideful man with leprosy almost rejected God’s healing because of the way God chose to heal him. For the entire story, read 2 Kings 5:1-14.
Naaman was an important man of high regard in Aram. He was an army commander and a valiant soldier. But Naaman also had leprosy, a disease that, in his time, brought shame and isolation.
A Jewish servant girl told Naaman about God’s prophet Elisha who could heal. Naaman agreed to make the journey to see Elisha and took much gold and silver with him, expecting to pay a high price for his healing.
But God’s instruction to Naaman for healing, through the prophet Elisha, was simply to wash his body seven times in the Jordan River.
Naaman stormed off in a fit of anger. Why didn’t God’s prophet wave his hand and cure me? Besides, we have better waters to be cleansed in than these here in Israel!
The Wisdom of a Servant
But Naaman’s servants who were with him were wiser than he. They gently asked him to consider his motives. Here’s a paraphrase:
“What does it matter which river you wash in? What are you trying to protect? You are the same person regardless of where you wash. See yourself the way Jehovah God sees you as important and valuable. Elisha has promised God will heal you. Why would you spoil that?”
Perhaps Naaman’s pride was an attempt to protect himself from the shame of leprosy. Elisha’s humble instructions for healing may have felt like disrespect to Naaman. And the situation was out of his control, threatening to tear down the prideful wall of protection he had built around himself.
Admittedly, I may be reading between the lines of this story. But, sometimes, God does allow us to experience difficulty so we will learn humble dependence on Him (2 Corinthians 1:9). “Even if obeying me puts you in a position of emotional danger, will you let me heal you as I walk with you through dirty waters?”
From Humility to Healing
Finally, Naaman willing humbled himself. He faced the rebellion of his pride, and subjected himself to what he feared—being viewed as someone only worthy of washing in a dirty river. And he was healed!
So he went down and dipped himself seven times in the Jordan, according to the word of the man of God, and his flesh was restored like the flesh of a little child, and he was clean (2 Kings 5:14).
Child of God, do you wish to be healed and delivered from the lies which create a lack of self-control, hurting both yourself and others? Be willing to be exposed to what you fear. Take hold of God’s power to obey. Use his power to reject your sinful inclinations and trust him enough to know He will define your value and wipe away your shame.
Kathy, today’s guest blogger, is giving away a copy of her new book, Pure-Hearted: The Blessings of Living Out God’s Glory. For a chance to win, comment on this post. (US addresses only please.) Earn a second chance to win but sharing this post on Facebook. Leave a separate comment that you shared. The winner will be drawn on Friday, January 12th at 8am central time.
Kathy Collard Miller is an award-winning author of over 50 books that include Christian living topics, women’s Bible studies, and Bible commentaries. She has spoken in 8 foreign countries and over 30 US states. Kathy and Larry have been married for 47 years. They have two grown children and two grandchildren. They live in Southern California and often write and speak together. Visit her at www.KathyCollardMiller.com. She would love to hear from you. (This guest blog is adapted from Pure-Hearted: The Blessings of Living Out God’s Glory) Kathy would love to connect with you on social media. Find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.