2 Chronicles 1-4, Psalm 71
Approximately 30 years ago I began my residency or apprenticeship in Ob/Gyn. Prior to that I had learned much book knowledge, but then I had to start to apply what I had learned. Learning surgery; how to move my hands, how to and where to cut and stitch, etc was very humbling. During my first year I just focused internally at learning my profession to the best of my ability. It was in my second year as I was also moving along in the Bible, that I saw the bigger picture. This was not just a profession or my job, but my ministry where I would be serving my patients, and with that my desire to learn more and more was heightened. I love how my Orthodox Jewish patients put it. When they thank me and I deflect their focus onto God, many of them will say, "but today you were God's messenger to us."
According to Eusebius (early church historian) and Josephus (Jewish/Roman historian) we learn that Solomon took over as king between the age of 12-15 years old. Though he learned much through the wonderful legacy of his father, David, the job before him was daunting. With this mindset, we read his first act was to humbly seek out God. We read he led a large assembly and in 2 Chr 1:6 a thousand burnt offerings were offered to God. In v.7 we read, "On that night God appeared to Solomon, and said to him, "Ask! What shall I give you?" After exalting God, we see his request in 2 Chr 1:10, "Now give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people; for who can judge this great people of Yours?" We see in his request his humility and his desire to be a servant to God's people. We read in the next 2 verses that God was pleased with Solomon's request and besides wisdom and knowledge he gave him riches and wealth and honor. Jon Courson says in his commentary, "In asking for knowledge to wisely rule, he sought not for himself, but for his kingdom".
Are we teachable? Do we see our jobs as just a job or our ministry? No matter what we do we can use it to bless someone else. I mentioned once before the woman who prayed over me when I found my mother passed away in her hospital room was probably housekeeping. But that day rather than cleaning she used her position to minister to me and pray over me, a weeping third year medical student, and in so doing began my search for God. What we do, where we do it and who we do it with is never an accident. This is our mission field. For those who are young, may you have a sensitive desire like Solomon to cultivate that servant's heart, be teachable and humble, and be the best that you can be. For those of us who are older, may we pass on the legacy of that ministering servant, like David did, to the next generation.
Messages from Pastor Lloyd Pulley: