June 17 - (2 Kgs. 4-5) Elisha does many miracles in this passage. From multiplying oil, raising the dead, healing leprosy, then causing ramifications for his servant’s disobedience.  It reminds me that many of these miracles Jesus performs while He is on earth.  Ponder what happened to Gehazi. He was working for a great prophet. I’m sure he heard and saw many miracles and wisdom from Elisha. But it wasn’t enough.  Renewing our minds are so important no matter who we have influencing our lives.  

June 18 – (2 Kgs. 6-8) I think my favorite passage here is 6:8-23. It reminds me again that there are forces working for us that we cannot see!  I’m not going to comment any more… I just want to ponder God’s mighty power working for us… always! Go, in God’s power!  

June 19 – (2 Kgs. 9-10) This is an account of wiping out Ahab’s family as the Lord had foretold.  It’s hard to imagine the Lord commanding this gruesome killing but it shows us just how much He hates idolatry in our lives.  Yes, God wants to be the only One glorified, but He knows how idolatry reduces and diminishes what He has created us to be.   “Lord show me what I have placed above You and show me how to tear it down today!” 

June 20 – (2 Kgs. 11-13) Now the women are getting involved in destroying the family, so they can rule.  Athaliah (mother of Ahaziah, king of Judah) destroyed all the royal heirs when she saw that her son was dead.  She ruled for 6 years.  She missed one heir (Joash) which the Lord protected.  Jehoiada, the priest, had guards protect Joash until he could be proclaimed king.  Are there times in your life that you are waiting for God to move in a certain area and don’t understand why it is taking so long?  Here is an example of that.  Joash was just too young when Ahaziah died so he needed some time to grow up just a little.  It reminds me of when we felt we were supposed to move out of our “too big” house once the kids were no longer living there.  We put it for sale and began looking for something to downsize into.  Well….2 years later we get our 1st and only offer and needed to be out in one month.  Needless to say, we were scrambling because we had long since stopped even looking for a new place.  It was amazing how we saw God move in that time frame of one month.  We found a house that had the floor plan we felt we needed with some of the “extras” we were hoping for.  It was a house that was just being built and would be done just in time for us to move in!  It was in an area that building was very slow, so they reduced the price to fit our budget!  In other words, had we sold our house 2 years prior, this would never have happened.   God’s timing is perfect whether we see it or not.  We need to trust Him that He knows the plans for us, for a future and a hope!

            When we felt it was time to downsize even more and be mortgage free, we began the process of looking. Because of the market and the current house God had given us, we felt we could find a house before we sold our current house.  This process took almost 2 years again, but this time we learned from the past and were trusting God way more than the last time. In the end we are currently in our mortgage-free home and God worked many wonders and might I even say miracles during the whole process.  Let’s go one more step. This year we moved Pastor Torry’s parents here from Penna. to help care for them. Finding a place for them and dealing with some health issues has been a challenge but again God provided for them in a miraculous way. 

            These journeys have been very challenging but with each step, my trust and faith in God has increased immensely.  Without them, I would not trust Him as much.  Though the wait and some circumstances were not evidence that God had only good in mind for me, I now see they have produced a trust and closeness with Him I never had before.  Thank you, Jesus, that: “All things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.” (Rom. 8:28-29)

            Joash (also Jehoash) did what was right in God’s sight as the priest Jehoiada instructed him.  He did not tear down high places (not good). He did work on repairing the temple (good). 

June 21 – (2 Kgs. 14-15) Amaziah reigns in Judah and did what was right in God’s sight.  Okay he only did right for a short time.  Does this sound familiar? What was his downfall?  Can you relate to this in your life?  The new twist is that God allowed Israel to take down Judah.  How sad.  Does this sound like in-fighting?

            In the 15th year reign of Amaziah (king of Judah), Jeroboam II (son of Joash) became king of Israel (Samaria) and reigned 41 years. In the 27th year of Jeroboam II, Azariah the son of Amaziah became king of Judah and reigned 52 years. As we finish chapter 15, Many kings are replaced both in Israel and in Judah. (Look at the chart in the attachments to get a visual.)  It reminds me that life goes on. Though our life eventually ends, our deeds will affect those who are left behind. 

June 22 – (2 Kgs. 16-17) Because of its long history of sin and rebellion, the Northern Kingdom was invaded, beaten, and exiled.  Foreigners settled the vacant land and practiced idolatry. Yet even in this time of “discipline” God is being very creative to get these non-believers to learn to “fear the Lord”.  Do you see how in Israel’s backsliding, that other nations came to be exposed to Jehovah God (17:24-28)?  Only God could think it up and only God could make it work!  

June 23 – (2 Kgs. 18-19) These chapters remind me yet again, that God is with us, through it all.  All that he has planned is for our good and His Glory.  Sometimes “our good” means discipline to show us where we need to repent and change our thinking in some areas (renew our mind).  Let’s not reject anything God has allowed, knowing it is for our good and His glory!