Archive for June 30th, 2018

2 Kings 14The Blustering Thistle  

Saturday, June 30, 2018

In this portion of Israel’s history we will need commentary to sort out who is the cause of what; and what today’s brief fable signifies.  The vulnerable thistle approaches the tall, strong cedar with a useless proposition.  This likely illustrates the foolhardy policies and actions of the leader Amaziah who threatens the powerful Jehoash.  Because Amaziah experienced victory over the Edomites and he now believes he can do anything.  He makes a common mistake – he believes in himself and follows his own ego rather than taking counsel from God.  The result of this bluster and imprudence is turbulence and it spells the end for Amaziah.  Yet in the end . . . and here is where we see God’s goodness . . . God saves the faithful people despite their foolhardy leaders.

It is likely that each of us can point to a time when we have been the thorny thistle threatening the mighty cedar; and if we are honest, we will also remember the turbulence that followed.  In our ego-driven culture we are inculcated in the thinking that we can do anything we put our minds to.  We can make more money, be more beautiful or handsome, buy a larger home or car, have the most current technology . . . and all of this will make us more popular and happy.  This, of course, is the thinking of the threatening thistle . . . and it is false.  How much more prudent it is to turn to God rather than bluster our way through life.

We see a clear choice before us today.  We can act as the foolish leaders do or we can turn to the God who created us in love . . . to be loved.  We can threaten others as the thistle does, or we can act in mercy, compassion and fidelity as God does.  And so we pray . . .

Our loving God is waiting to rescue us from the threats of the world.  Open our ears that we may hear God’s word.

Our tender God is waiting to heal us in love.  Open our eyes that we may see God in others.

Our compassionate God is waiting to transform us in joy.  Open our hearts that we may act in and through God.  Amen. 

We will be away from the Internet for several days. Please enjoy this reflection first posted on June 30, 2011.

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