Discontented Jew: “Everybody else has one. It’s cool. They get to see their king riding the palace chariot in parades. I bet the local yokels feel good when they see their king walking on the royal red carpet, with the scepter in his hand and that big crown on his head. I imagine I would get goosebumps seeing our king (if we had one) surrounded by royal servants, bodyguards and palace officials. Best of all, it must be reassuring when war breaks-out to see their king calling the shots and taking control. They must feel more confident and better about themselves. We need a king.”

Journalist: “But you have a king, don’t you?”

Discontented Jew: “Nah, not really. Samuel tells us we have a king, but we can’t see him. Seriously, we can’t! It’s embarrassing to just have a plain old prophet speaking on behalf of an invisible King. I find it particularly unsettling when times are so tough, and situations are so complex. And, really — the prophet’s sons are not satisfactory; so, we need a change. There must be more to national leadership than our circuit travelling prophet.”

And so, the Jews demanded to have their own tangible, touchable, seeable king. No longer were they contented with mere prophets and priests. Samuel was crushed to think that the people were demanding their own king.

But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, “Give us a king to judge us.” And Samuel prayed to the LORD. And the LORD said to Samuel, “Obey the voice of the people in all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me from being king over them. 1Samuel 8:6-7

The Lord: “Samuel, don’t take it personally. The real issue is far different than what the people are saying. Deep down, the problem is they are rejecting me as their King. No longer do they want to yield and surrender to Me. They want to put their own person on the throne. Someone just like themselves, who will give them what they want. But Samuel, be sure to warn them of the consequences of the choice they are making. There are long-lasting and far-reaching, not-so-nice side effects with which they will have to live.”

And the Lord allowed them to have their own king.

Who is reigning in your life? Can you truthfully say that you are bowing to the Lord’s will, surrendering to Him and honoring Him with the choices you are making? Or have you re-crowned yourself as the monarch in your life? Calling your own shots. Doing what pleases you. Kissing your own toes. Saluting yourself saying: “Yes, I am doing what I want to do. I’m happy!”  You may be happy, but is God happy?

Romans 6 provides a flashback into our lives before we were saved – when sin and self reigned supreme on the throne of our lives. We surrendered and yielded to our appetites, lusts and desires. When we trusted Christ, we stepped down and surrendered fully to Him and crowned Him as the Lord and Saviour of our lives. Our intent back then was to obey Him, own allegiance to Him, do whatever pleased Him and surrender to Him. Back then, it was all about HIM.

“Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory.” 1Peter 1:8

Is it still all about HIM, who cannot be seen just yet with my physical eyes, or lately, has it all been about ME? – How I feel; what I like; what I want; and what I think.

Who really is reigning in your life in 2018?

Walk carefully and closely with the Lord today.

Warmly in Christ
Peter Ramsay

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