But Hezekiah’s heart was proud and he did not respond to the kindness shown him; therefore the LORD’s wrath was on him and on Judah and Jerusalem. 2 Chronicles 32:25
Pride is thinking highly of one’s self or one’s own accomplishments. It is a highly prized feeling in this world. Children are trained to be proud of themselves and what they can do. Pride says, ‘I can do it’, or ‘I am so good.’ It is all about self.
All over the world, people are struggling with themselves and who they are. They struggle with their own self value in this world. Counselors are always telling people that they have high value and must be proud of themselves.
Hezekiah had done a great job at following the commands of God in removing false idols and serving Him alone. Yet, at some point he began to allow pride in himself, turning his heart away from God. Since he had pride in his heart, God began to bring His wrath upon him and the nation.
The danger in pride is that it is all about self. It is saying that you ca do it without anyone else’s help. It ignores others or God and removes them from the picture.
Pride in self is what led to the downfall of Satan. Pride removes God from the picture. Many believers have allow pride to enter their hearts and minds. As they do that, they are slowly pushing God of the throne of their heart and putting themselves on that throne that is supposed to be God’s throne.
The only pride a believer should have is in what Jesus had done for them and others, and pride in what others are doing and who they are. Self pride brings about God’s wrath, because it takes the focus off of Him and places it on self.
You may have some self pride in your heart. Seek God for strength and realize who He is and who you really area in the grand scheme of eternal life and this universe.
In yourself you are nothing. You cannot do anything on your own. In fact, you messed everything up by allowing sin into your life.
Turn from self pride and realize who you are. As a believer you are God’s servant doing God’s work for God’s purpose to honor Him. Know what Jesus has done for you and be proud of Him, not self.
Give God all the credit and take pride in Him.
I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will know what He has done for you; that you will take pride in God’s work; that you will turn from self pride to God; and that you will allow God to get all the credit in your life.
Because your heart was responsive and you humbled yourself before the LORD when you heard what I have spoken against this place and its people–that they would become a curse and be laid waste–and because you tore your robes and wept in my presence, I also have heard you, declares the LORD. 2 Kings 22:19
Hearing someone is something easy to do and every one can do it. Responding to what a person hears is something different. With as much noise as is going on all around a person, most people do not respond to what they are hearing.
Everywhere a person goes, there are signs saying for people to go the speed limit. Yet, many people do not even try to go the speed limit. Warnings are ignored as people do what they want to do.
They hear what is said, but do not respond to it.
Josiah had become king and followed God. He had the temple restored. In the process of the restoration, the book containing God’s word to the people was found. In it he found out that they had not been following God and God was going to curse and destroy them.
Immediately Josiah tore his robe and began to weep. He realized what they had done was wrong and sought God’s forgiveness. God heard him and held back His anger against the people.
Every Sunday people hear God’s word being preached, yet, many do not respond to it. They think it was a good message…for the other guy…not for themselves. They do not change in any way. They continue to live in sinful ways outside of the church, ignoring what God’s word says.
It is easy to hear what God’s word says, but it takes effort to act upon it, to allow it to change one’s life.
God’s word is alive and active and can change you, if you allow it. When you hear something God is speaking to you, make the necessary changes. Live according to God’s word.
As a believer, you are to live according to what God desires. If you hear what He is saying and are not doing it, you are disobeying God. Once you hear what He has to tell you, you are responsible to do it. Do not allow God’s word to go in one ear and out the other and never change anything.
God is speaking…are you really listening?
I pray today that you will know what God is saying; that you will act upon God’s word to you; that the Holy Spirit will guide you in what God desires of you; and that God will give you strength to do His will.
Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the wilderness these forty years, to humble and test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. Deuteronomy 8:2
Very few people like to go through testing. It is often a time of high anxiety and fear. The higher the importance of the test, the higher the level of fear and worry a person may have.
Testing usually determines what is next in the life of a person. If the person passes the test, he can move on to the next level in whatever field the test was for. If he fails the test, he steps back and either quits or has to re-take the test.
While the common thought of what a test is, is that it is a written test, the majority of tests people take are not written down. They are tests of character. When a person is working for someone, the boss is testing the person by watching how he works and reacts to things. This is done to determine if the person can get a promotion.
Moses tells the Israelites to remember what they went through in the wilderness. That time of wandering was a test from God. It was an unwritten test to determine what was in their hearts and how well they will follow God’s commands.
Even to this day God still tests people. Even though He already knows what is in their hearts, He tests them to see how they will react to situations and how well they will obey God. Although with God, He gives the answers to the test. He tells people how to act and follow Him. All a person needs to do is obey God’s commands and he will pass the test. Once a person passes God’s test, God will move him forward to the next level.
Think about the hard times in your life, the times of being in a wilderness. Those times are there to help build you up. They are a test to determine how well you will follow God.
Each time you are tested by God, you have to make a choice. Will you follow God’s commands in the situation? Or will you follow the ways of this world?
Following the ways of this world, will be failure. Following God will always be passing. God can then move you up and forward.
How are you passing?
I pray today that you will know God’s commands for your life; that you will recognize the tests of God; that you will pass every test of God; and that you will follow God with all of your heart and life.