Sunday, May 14, 2017

Rethinking Priorities

I've recently been reading about King Solomon in the Old Testament, specifically in the book of I Kings.  I'm especially impressed by Solomon's prayer after he ascends to the throne following the death of his father, King David.  God basically gives Solomon a "blank check," asking Solomon to pray for anything he wants.  Yet, in humility, Solomon asks the Lord to "give Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people to discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?” (I Kings 3:9).  This prayer greatly pleased the Lord in that Solomon did not pray for long life, riches or even the death of his enemies (vs. 11).

Think about it.  Solomon didn't pray to live a long time, although there is nothing wrong with praying for length of days. He didn't pray for riches or financial security, although it is definitely okay to pray for God to meet needs.  Finally, he didn't pray for the destruction of his enemies (or removal of his persecutors).  Again, it is acceptable to pray for God to remove times of affliction.

Perhaps, these are things we all pray about when going through cancer of major sickness.  All are legitimate prayers.  For example, we may pray to live a long time, that is, to be healed.  In addition, we may pray for riches or for all needs to be met.  Furthermore, we may pray for the destruction of our enemy, i.e. cancer. 

But, I think Solomon's prayer emphasizes what is truly important in life, that is, to have godly wisdom.  After praying for wisdom, as far as I know, I think God did provide all of the other items, including long life, riches and peace from his enemies.

"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you" (Matthew 6:33).  Healing and riches are nice.  Having wisdom is much, much better.  

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