August 2 Reality


Photo by Matt Gruber

King Hezekiah’s Reality:

Bad things happen to God’s faithful people.

“After all Hezekiah (king of Judah) had faithfully done, Sennacherib king of Assyria came and invaded Judah.”  2 Chronicles 32;1

God fights the battle.

Hezekiah reminded his people:  “Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid or discouraged…for there is a greater power with us than with him.  With him is only the arm of flesh, but with us is the Lord our God to help us and to fight our battles.”  2 Chronicles 32:7-8.

God hears and answers a cry for help.

“King Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah cried out in prayer to heaven about this.  And the Lord sent an angel, who annihilated all the fighting men and leaders and officers of the Assyrian king…So the Lord saved Hezekiah from the hand of Sennacherib…He took care of them on every side.”  2 Chronicles 32:20-22

Our reality:

Even when we live for Christ, we encounter challenges to our faith–illness, work conflicts, money issues, relationship snags…

“In this world you will have tribulation…”  John 16:37

God is always there for us.

“But take heart–I have overcome the world.”  John 16:37  “He who did not spare His own son, but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?”Romans 8:32

Lord God, like King Hezekiah we face “enemies” that threaten to destroy our peace.  May we remember to call on you in prayer;   to seek your hand in our deliverance;  to trust you with our “battles.”  We thank you for the ultimate victory over sin, death and evil won for us by your son’s death on Calvary’s cross.  May we live this day in humble service to you for all you have done for us.  In Jesus’ name we pray,  Amen.

“Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted.  The troubles of my heart have multiplied;  free me from my anguish…Guard my life and rescue me;  let me not be  put to shame, for I take refuge in you.”

                                                            Psalm 25:16-17, 20





2 Chronicles 32:1-33:13;  Romans 15:23-16:7;  Psalm 25:16-22;  Proverbs 20:16-18



July 31 Renewal


Photo by Matt Gruber


2 Chronicles 29:1-36:  Romans 14:1-23:  Psalm 24:1-10;  Proverbs 20:12

“Hezekiah was 25 years old when he became king…he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord…he opened the doors of the temple of the Lord and repaired them…(the Levites) went in to purify the temple as the king had ordered, following the word of the Lord.  The priests went in to the sanctuary to purify it.  They brought out everything unclean that they found…so the service of the Lord was reestablished.  Hezekiah and all the people rejoiced at what God had brought about for his people, because it was done so quickly.”  2 Chronicles 29:1,3,15-16, 35-36

By God’s grace Hezekiah put the kingdom under his rule back on the right path.  Gone was idol worship and closed temple doors.  Open was the heart of the king, the hearts of his people and the doors to the Lord’s house.  True worship was renewed.

By God’s grace I am renewed.

Open the doors to my heart, O Lord,

temple doors shut tight

by sin and wayward ways.

Remove false trappings of self importance

that cover your glory

made dingy and grimy by ego film and dust.

Cleanse me with your gift-blood

and make me pure within

that I may sing your praise.

Lord God, with you renewal is possible!  With repentance on our lips we turn away from our self-made idols and receive cleansing through the blood of the Lamb–your Son our Lord.  Thank you for cleansing us and renewing us.  May the doors of our heart be open for worship and praise this day.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.