Needed follow through
Experience is a great teacher. As a twenty-year old soon-to-be mother, I was so unsure of my parenting skills. Many were the questions that rolled through my mind about how I would handle this situation or that.
One lesson I learned well from the toddler stage on was follow through. If I warned, “stop that or I’ll ___” then I need to follow through. If my children were to learn to obey my directions then they needed to learn the consequences for not acting in accordance. I didn’t do the follow through for the sake of compliance but out of a heart full of love that wanted only the best for them.
In 2 Kings 17, we come to a low point in Israel’s history. God loved his people even when they turned from him. Out of his great love, he sent prophet after prophet to warn his people of the consequences of their unfaithfulness. Yet they persisted in seeking after worthless idols and their own pleasures. Since God is a good father, he wants what is best for his children and he knew the Israelites were throwing their lives away for what would never satisfy.
In 2 Kings, God followed through with his warnings. Since I’ve walked this road on a much smaller scale as a parent, I know God’s heart hurt. God still loved his people but since he was also a God of justice the time had come to follow through. As a parent, I follow his example and work to balance love and justice for the good of my children.
In 2 Kings 17, we find a concise history of Israel that led to the moment of their removal from their land. The history mixed with God’s love, mercy, and justice should cause each of us to pause and reflect.
Are we striving to live in accordance with God’s ways? We don’t need to be perfect but we should be trying. Is there some action or thought process we feel convicted over? Could it be God calling out to us to make changes he knows will be for our good? Are we listening? If not, God out of his great love may step in and follow through with consequences so we may get back on track.
Lord, open my eyes to ways I need to change to become more Christ-like. I want a heart that heeds to your callings and warnings before follow through is needed. Help me. Amen!