Those Exceptions of Life
Verse: 2 Kings 5
Is your life happy . . . except for one thing? Perhaps you enjoy a loving marriage, a beautiful home and financial ease . . . except you suffer from infertility. Maybe you have graduated with a master’s degree, founded a business and are in top physical condition . . . except your parents are getting divorced. If you compiled a list of all the positives in your life, what would you include? I have great friends; I’m an accomplished pianist; I’ve inherited a green thumb. But what disrupts your sense of well-being? All of us possess at least one “except” that gets in the way of our happiness.
An unnamed slave girl experienced some poignant “excepts” in her young life. She was one of God’s chosen people. She had faith in God . . . except she was a captive of war in a foreign land. The good news: She found herself in the household of a commander of the army.
Naaman, the commander, also experienced some significant “excepts.” He had great authority and was highly regarded by the king. Although he was a Gentile, he found favor with the God of Israel and was granted military victory. One “except” plagued him: leprosy. If only he could find a cure, his life would be complete.
The slave girl and Naaman had choices to make concerning life’s exceptions. Would they let the exceptions rule their lives? Or would they let God rule without exception? The slave girl could have let her situation make her bitter. Instead, she chose to help the man who was her master. And Naaman chose to take the advice of a servant girl, not allowing his pride to stand in the way of her help.
Is God asking you to take one step of obedience that may bring help and healing to another person? Perhaps it’s as simple as taking up a pen and beginning a note of apology even though you’re still hurting from what they did to you? Maybe you need to carve out time for the one thing you’ve been dreading to do. It could be you’re compelled to take one act of firm discipline for the unruly child you love. That first step of obedience can bring your exception into a different light when you learn step by step what it means to trust God without exceptions
Now Naaman was commander of the army of the king of Aram. He was a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded, because through him the LORD had given victory to Aram. He was a valiant soldier, but he had leprosy.
1. What except has disrupted your life?
2. How have you handled your exception? How has this story lent some perspective on your own situation?
3. What step has God asked you to take that you are reluctant to try?