Surely it was for my benefit that I suffered such anguish. In your love you kept me from the pit of destruction; you have put all my sins behind your back. Isaiah 38:7
Suffering and sickness occur on a regular basis with people all over the entire world. The range of sickness that occurs is extremely wide. Some sickness are of a minor, temporary sort, while others are life-threatening and bring about death.
One of the questions that is commonly asked by most people is why the sickness? Why does one get sick? Why does one recover and another does not? Very rarely does a person look at a sickness or disease as something good or as a benefit.
Hezekiah had followed God faithfully for a time, but then started to walk away from Him. Isaiah comes to him telling him that he will soon die and must get his life in order. After asking for some more time to live, God grants it. Hezekiah realized that the sickness was for his benefit.
There may be times when a sickness is a wakeup call to a person. One can be facing death in the face and has to make a choice as to whom he will serve, self or God.
God has mercy on people and wants everyone to be saved. He may use disasters or sickness to get one’s attention. This is especially true for those who already believe in Him and have been following Him. God can strike a person to get him to get his life in order.
Many people who are facing death suddenly have a different perspective on life. They realize what is really important, and it is not money or positions, but real life. They also begin to realize there is the rest of eternity to deal with.
As a believer, your life should be focused on living for God in every area of your life. This means you will strive to flee sin and be His witness in this world.
Take a look at your life and see how you are doing at truly following God. Does your life show one who loves God from the heart, or one who loves God only in words?
God is giving you a chance today to get your house in order. You may or may not have tomorrow, but you do have today. Don’t make God have to strike you to get your attention. Live for God while you can and receive the gift of eternal life that Jesus promised.
I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will live for God in every area of your life; that you will see God’s hand at work in your life; and that you will trust God with your life.
The Lord says: “These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” Isaiah 29:13
Actions are something that are easy to do, but can fool many people. Just as with a magician doing a card trick as he makes it appear that the card appeared out of no where by magic, actions can appear to be with good intent. In the same way as the trick, actions are not always with the right heart.
People will often do certain things only because they are forced to do them, not because they want to do them. The actions are not really coming from the heart.
Isaiah has a prophecy against a city that has a set of actions that do not match up to their heart. God states that the people are quick to come to Him in word, but not with their heart.
It is easy for a person to claim to believe in and follow Jesus. It is easy for a person to go to church on Sunday and look good to the rest of the world. Doing these things can appear to most people that the person is a believer and is following God correctly.
The reason they can think this, is that man cannot see into the heart. Surface actions do not always reveal what is in the heart.
There are many people who go to church every Sunday, claiming to be a believer, but do not spend a moment with God outside of church. They never read the Bible, witness or pray. They have no relationship with God. It is all about appearance.
The true believer will worship God with full heart and spirit. Living for God will be something he wants to do, not something he has to do. It is all about the heart, not the actions. Actions will follow the heart.
Think about why you claim to believe in Jesus, then think about how you show that you believe in Jesus. Are you believing just to look good? Or are you doing it out of great love for God because of His great love for you?
Let everything that you say and do for God be done from the heart out of love. Do not let it just be a ritual or habit. Be alive in your worship of God with your whole life.
I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will love God with all of your heart; that you will do things out of love for God; and that you will honor God with your heart.