S (Scripture): 2 Kings 18:28 The chief adviser (to the king of Assyria) then stood there (before God’s people in Judah) and called out loudly in the Judahite dialect, “Listen to the message of the great king, the king of Assyria. 29 This is what the king says: ‘Don’t let Hezekiah mislead you, for he is not able to rescue you from my hand! 30 Don’t let Hezekiah talk you into trusting in the Lord when he says, “The Lord will certainly rescue us; this city will not be handed over to the king of Assyria.”
…35 Who among all the gods of the lands has rescued their lands from my power? So how can the Lord rescue Jerusalem from my power?’”
O (Observation): The kings of Israel and Judah were in cycles of doing good in the sight of the Lord and doing evil in the sight of the Lord. Neighboring nations continually threatened to invade and take over the lush lands inhabited by God’s people.
Here, the Assyrians are taking on Judah and its king, King Hezekiah. The adviser to the king of Assyria is trying to cause Judah’s people to doubt the level of protection that their God can provide. He is planting seeds of doubt, recalling other victories of the Assyrians.
A (Application): Facebook is my main source of doubt. Cynicism is on a sharp increase of late, and it destroys the joy of social media. I don’t like unfriending people and so I just end up scrolling through to read the next post down…from someone less cynical…or a post of a funny kid picture or a picture of someone’s pet.
With folks being so divisive, I can start to see how we don’t feel like much hope exists. The Enemy finds ways to cause us to say and do things that divide, rather than build up. (How do I know? Because I’ve said things intentionally divisive, and I repent of those times in which I was too harsh.)
So, what builds up? Perhaps curiosity, rather than defensiveness. When someone writes a cynical post, I’ve started to get curious, rather than defensive. That posture takes a lot of energy, though, I will admit. If you don’t have the energy to keep that posture, perhaps you should keep scrolling…until you do have the energy. Don’t let the cries of the Enemy win. God wins. God has won, already.
P (Prayer): Lord, give us wisdom to know when to move on and when to get curious. Amen.