“Thank God For Additional Years!”(Is.38:9-15).
King Hezekiah was ill and at the point of death. Prophet Isaiah went to him with these blunt words: “This is what the LORD says: ‘Put your house in order, because you are going to die; you will not recover.'” These words were too hard for a sick person.
The king turned to the LORD in prayer and wept bitterly. The LORD heard his prayers and saw his tears, so he added fifteen more years to his life span(Is.38:1-8).
Hezekiah was twenty-five years old when he became king of Judah. He ruled for twenty-nine years. He died at age fifty four(II Kgs 18:1). This suggests that he was thirty nine years old when he fell ill. So he would have died at that age, but for the fifteen years bonus added to his life.
When he recovered from his sickness he wrote a prayer (hymn) of gratitude for the additional years of grace.
The psalmist prays that the LORD should ” teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom”(Ps.91:12). The question is “What would you do differently if you know the exact year in which you will die, as it was with king Hezekiah?”
The king was probaly happy of his recoverey. He couldn’t imagine how he was to die in his prime of life. He cried, moaned and his eyes grew weak as he looked up to heaven pleading with the LORD to come to his aid.
Maybe the only people who can imagine Hezekiah’s experience are those with terminal diseases who have been told by doctors how much longer they have to live. The rest of us know that one day we will die, but we would hate it if we knew the exact year of our death.
For Hezekiah it was a humbling experience and he expressed it: “I will walk humbly all my years because of this anguish of my soul.”
Dear friend, we may not know the exact year of our death. We may not even know that we would’ve been long dead, and that we are now living on the additional years. What is needful is for us to walk humbly and live each day as if it was our last day. In which case we should treat others each day as if it was their last day.
Above all keep your house in order as you acclaim the Lordship of Christ Jesus through whom God has shown you mercy.
Prayer of the day and week: Almighty God, thank you for this extra day of grace. Amen!
Welcome to a new working day and week! Have a blessed day and week! Peace be with you!
Rev Babila Fochang.