Prayer Mulligan

2 Chronicles 30: 20

So the Lord heard Hezekiah and healed the people.

King Hezekiah called for the celebration of Passover. He sent messengers to all the tribes to gather in Jerusalem for the ceremony. There were a few problems. It was the wrong time of the year, there were not enough priests who were ceremonially clean, the people were not purified, well, you get the idea.

The tribes of Israel and Judah had fallen away from the Lord and not continued the ceremonies and feasts of tradition. Hezekiah decided to reintroduce these traditions regardless of the time of year. There was very little right about the preparation or process but Hezekiah said a prayer. He asked the Lord to bless the people in spite of themselves, literally to pardon all those who seek God. God’s response was to heal the hearts of a troubled nation. In fact, the people were restored to their former status and celebrated with great joy. At the end of the seven day feast there was so much joy among the people that they extended the feast for another seven days. Hezekiah contributed 1000 bulls and 7000 sheep for the feast. The princes gave 1000 bulls and 10,000 sheep. The people celebrated God and their great history. They reminded themselves of who they were and they turned back to their Lord and God. God was waiting with open arms and granted them fellowship and blessing.

One of the lessons we can take away from this passage is that everything does not have to be perfect in order to worship God. You don’t have to have the perfect music and the perfect time with the right people, etc. What is required is a heart turned towards God. If we seek Him, even in our brokenness and failures, He is gracious and kind to hear us and bless us.
Yahweh was waiting for Israel and Judah to turn back to Him. He watched them every day, longing for their hearts to turn to Him. Day after day He waited just as He does for us. Today I’m too busy. Yesterday I didn’t feel well. The day before that I had company. You get the idea. Before you know it, days and days have gone by without our taking the time to celebrate the Lord or to worship Him. If we didn’t eat we might not say any prayers.

Thank God (literally) that He is kind, forgiving and willing to wait for us. He poured out His blessing on them as soon as they called Him. They could have enjoyed that healing and the Lord’s grace any prior day. It wasn’t that God wasn’t willing. They were lost in the tall weeds. Bless Hezekiah. He had a vision for returning God’s people to their former position in God. He called for the feast, and bless God, the people responded.

Take this story and apply it to your own life. No matter what ways you feel you have stumbled, God is waiting to restore you to your former glory. Today can be your Passover feast. It can be the day you celebrate the curse passing over you. Have a great day!

Walk with God like Moses

Numbers 9: 8

Moses answered them, “Wait until I found out what the Lord commands concerning you.”

What an awesome lesson from the leader of the Israelites. The time of the Passover was at hand but some men became ceremonially unclean because of contact with a dead body. A conversation ensued about whether or not these men ought to be allowed to receive the Passover supper.

Isn’t that the way of the law and of small minds? There were people whose first response was exclusion. Legalistic people of all ages seek ways to exclude others from the graces of the Lord. How incredibly sad! Thank our dear Lord for Moses. You see, this was the first time this issue had presented itself so the people had no answer apart from their own reasoning. So Moses said, “Wait! Let’s ask the Lord and see what He says before we make any decisions.” Wow! Now that was a bold and faith filled answer. Oh to have that kind of response to problems today. And consider this. Moses was an Old Testament dude. He didn’t have Messiah but brother, he had a revelation. That is why we can still learn so much from Moses. If we will look at how he walked and talked with God it will inform our lives. It is especially illustrative if you will carry these verses forward and see them in the light of the New Testament.

And here is the very exciting part. God, through the work of Jesus, has sent us the Holy Spirit of promise so that we can today, in this time, walk with God the way Moses did. We can have God speak to every problem we face and every decision we make. Finally, God has come to walk with ordinary people. Glory, Hallelujah! If you can’t get excited about that you need to have your pulse checked. You can walk with God like Moses did. Truth be told, we have an even better deal than he did. We are living in the times of God with you, God in you. Inquire of the Lord in every circumstance and be blessed!