I look forward to spending time each day in God’s Word. It is a time to hear and learn from Him. Except, I have a confession to make. I skipped reading a few chapters this week. Yes, I did. I knew the story well enough that my heart just did not have the courage to face it—as if that would change it! Sometimes there are situations in life that are the same way, difficult things I just want to stick my head in the sand and wish it away. But, as we know, that is not the way life works. We have to face it with faith and move on through. At the time, I just couldn’t bear to read the sad tale of Solomon’s desertion from the ways of the Lord. Hearing stories about people making poor choices in their lives makes me sad as well. Not reading those chapters did not take away the reality of Solomon’s actions, nor the subsequent fallout that happened to Israel because of his sin. As I went back and read them, I could only purpose in my own heart to learn from the results of his actions. His actions led to dark days in Israel. It is my heart that my decisions do not lead to dark days in my own life, or in others.
I Kings 11 begins the story of Solomon’s heart turning away from the Lord by His foreign wives and their gods. I Kings 11: 5 In Solomon’s old age, they turned his heart to worship other gods instead of being completely faithful to the Lord his God, as his father, David, had been. Solomon worshiped Ashtoreth, the goddess of the Sidonians, and Molech, the detestable God of the Ammonites. In this way, Solomon did what was evil in the Lord’s sight; he refused to follow the Lord completely, as his father David, had done. It saddens my heart to read this. It saddens my heart to hear of people who I love and care for, walking away from the fullness of their connection with the Lord. I can’t control or make choices for others, only for myself.
It’s been a rough week for many. It’s felt like darkness is encroaching from all sides. But the good news is we have choices; and we have authority. We can choose to use the authority God has given us, or we can wallow in self pity.
After I received a telephone call with some very disappointing news, I began to declare: “Satan, I’m done. I’m done with your workings. I’m done. I’m done. I’m just done. Back off. Back off in Jesus Name.” A pretty simple prayer—but it was all I could say. And it’s how I was feeling. I wasn’t just done for myself, but for so many others who are dealing with difficult situations.
Are you experiencing some dark, difficult days? Do you know someone who is going through trials and tribulations? I come alongside you and declare that Jesus reigns. He reigns over everything. At His name, every sickness must submit. At His name, Satan must back off and back out. At His name, freedom shall come and His light shall invade every dark place. We see the subtly that Satan used in Solomon disobeying God’s law and marrying foreign wives. They snared him and lured him away from his first love. Father, I thank you for opening our eyes to Satan’s sneaky ways in our lives. I ask that you lead us and guide us. Keep us from the evil one and deliver us from temptation. Though we walk through dark valleys, I ask that your rod and staff protect and comfort your children. I thank you we do not have to be afraid of dark places, for even there you are in our midst. I thank you for grace, mercy and conviction; so if we are experiencing temptation you will show us the better way. I speak light to every dark place. I speak peace to every place of confusion. I speak hope to the hopeless places.
Father, I know there are parents, children, friends, and relatives who have made poor choices, as our example Solomon has done. I ask that you lead them out of their sin and back on your path. I pray that you will give wisdom to those who are walking in the light to help guide them back to you. I thank you, Holy Spirit, that you are working when we cannot work. We know you love the backslider. We know you love the sinner. We know you love us. Thank you for working all things together for your good, In Jesus Name, Amen.