| But Naaman went away angry and said, “I thought he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. -2 Kings 5:11
Naaman, a commander of the army of King Aram, was stricken with the disease of leprosy. At the advice of a young Israelite girl that was captured to serve as Naaman’s wife, he set out to go meet with the prophet Elisha. When he got to Elisha’s house, Naaman knocked on the door, and Elisha sent a servant to tell him to “Go wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh would be restored, and you will be cleansed.” Upon hearing this, Naaman was infuriated, and he went away angry, saying the words in the verse above.
As I pondered on this, I wondered how many times I had gone away angry when God did not show up for me the way I expected Him to. I wondered how many opportunities to experience God’s miraculous hand I missed because I did not obey His instructions.
Naaman obviously had something in mind when he went to see Elisha. He thought Elisha would stand and call on the name of the Lord, wave his hand over the spot and cure him, but instead, Elisha told him to wash in the Jordan River seven times. The Jordan River was one of the dirtiest rivers in Israel, so Naaman was shocked that the prophet picked it of all the rivers in Israel. Perhaps, God wanted to do more than just heal him. Perhaps God wanted to teach him the importance of man’s obedience in God’s master plan. Perhaps God wanted to teach him humility.
Whatever the case was, Naaman did not like what he heard, but I absolutely love what his servants said to him. “My father,” they said, “if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, ‘Wash and be cleansed’!” After hearing this, Naaman obeyed the prophet’s instructions, and not only was he completely healed of his leprosy, he also confessed that the God of Israel was the only true God in the entire world.
What has God called you to do that like Naaman, you might have ignored because it was not "some great thing?" I urge you today dear friends to never put God in a box. God can show up in different ways as He sees fit. He might want to teach us something specific or do something through us, and it behooves us to be open to whatever He chooses. Sometimes, He speaks through burning bushes as He did with Moses, and other times, He speaks through gentle whispers in the wind as He did with Elijah. Sometimes He heals the sick by speaking a word, and other times, He does it through a touch. Sometimes, He calls us through a light that flashes from Heaven as He did with Paul, and other times, He simply calls us to follow Him as He did with the twelve disciples.
Putting God in a box can hinder us from hearing from Him, thus preventing us from being obedient to His word. God is such a big God that cannot fit into any box that we can create, and we should always be mindful of this fact. Let us begin today to just expect God no matter how He might choose to reveal Himself to us. Rather than searching for burning bushes or lightning bolts from Heaven, let us do like David in 2 Samuel 7:18 and go in and just sit before the Lord with an expectant heart. Soak yourself in the word of God, and seek Him for who He is and not just for what you want from Him, and I can assure you that when you do this, you would be in a better position to hear from Him.
Grace and peace be with you.
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