Layers of Life
Joram, Ahab’s son, became king of Israel in Samaria in the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat, Judah’s king. He ruled for twelve years. 2 He did what was evil in the Lord’s eyes, but he wasn’t as bad as his father and mother. 2 Kings 3:1-2
He [Joash] became king in Jehu’s seventh year, and he ruled for forty years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Zibiah; she was from Beer-sheba.2 Jehoash always did what was right in the Lord’s eyes, because the priest Jehoiada was his teacher. 2 Kings 12:1-2
I recently took a train trip to the Montana Rocky Mountains. As I rolled into the mountains, I was amazed by the various layers of rocks in the mountains above me. Some layers were thick, some were thin. Some were hard, some were crumbly. Some were light, some were dark. Such a dramatic vision of the life these mountains have experienced!
What about our lives? Does a listing of our personal timelines reveal the same types of layers? Have we had bright, shiny layers, and long, dark times? Were we fragile and brittle at times, and strong and bold at other times?
Sometimes life happened to us, and other times we were able to direct where our lives were going and what was happening.
What if the layers say something about our connection to God? Were the fragile layers times we turned away from God? Can we see layers when God was deeply enmeshed in our lives?
As we were reading through the Hebrew Bible over the last year, many of us were able to see the layers of Israel’s relationship with God, especially during the time of the kings. The quotes from the Book of Second Kings are just two examples of the many descriptions of the kings of Israel and Judah, most of whom did ‘evil in the sight of the Lord,’ but a few of whom were faithful to God and God’s people.
The Bible shows us the layers of relationship between people and God. Layers of hope and strength, layers of fear and selfishness.
What kind of layer is being laid in our lives today? Will we look back and see a layer of strength through faithful obedience with God? Or will we see a fragile layer where we tried to take care of life on our own and turned away from God?
Let us look to the mountain of our strength and grace in our lives, our Holy and Gracious God, and let God take over building the foundation of our lives. Amen.
Pastor Anna-Lisa Hunter
September 2, 2021