Week 42 Tuesday

In the Eyes of the Lord

Today’s scripture selection: Second Chronicles 21-24

Key verses: Second Chronicles 24:2

“Joash did what was right in the eyes of the LORD all the years of Jehoiada the priest.”

I have a friend who once spoke of what it was like to do something “right there in front of God and everybody!”

Well, Scripture speaks about that very thing quite a bit.

Joash is a good example.

This young king, only seven years old when he came to the throne, knew what it was like to be under the positive influence of a good, faithful priest.  And he acted as God would have him act – “right there in front of God and everybody” – while under that positive influence.

Unfortunately, once it was removed, he was easily persuaded to do the very opposite.  And, right in God’s sight, he took the lead in the idol worship that would prove to be disastrous for him and his people.

It’s important to take seriously who and what we let influence us.

My Mom and Dad – being good parents – understood this well.

My Mom, especially, used to talk about how I mustn’t let some evil thing called “peer pressure” get the best of me.

At the time, it seemed like “much ado about nothing.”

But now I realize how it is true.

There is much that can influence us; sway us; convince us; and lead us in the wrong direction.  And what is that “wrong” direction? Away from God.

So be careful.  Think often about how and why you have come to the decisions you are making.  Consider who it is that is “pulling your strings” – if anyone.

And remember – God is watching.

Prayer: Lord, may the meditations of my heart, and my daily actions, be pleasing in your sight – regardless of what others have to say about them.  Amen.

By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. Elpis is the Greek word meaning “expectant hope.” He also serves on the associate clinical staff of the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care, Richmond, Virginia, both as a pastoral counselor and a ministerial assessment specialist, specializing in executive, clergy and relationship coaching. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, and a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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