Writer, Church leader, Eccentric Nut, Marketer

I'm Church Leader, Writer, Speaker, Marketer, Kindness Project Founder, Broadcaster and Superhero. But most important I'm a Husband, Father and a worshiper of Jesus.

16 September 2009

In the year that King Uzziah died...

Your personal opinion doesn't necessarily matter to God... but he does love us enough give us His mind if we want it. God is no respecter of person's and not that concerned that YOU be the one that is used... but He's got things he wants to use you for.

I love the story of King Uzziah. Quick... Biblical ink blot test here. When I say, "King Uzziah" what's the first thing you think about? He died. Nice.

In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple. Isaiah 6:1

Here's the backstory...
“Uzziah became king at 16 when his father, King Amaziah, was assassinated following a military disaster. Uzziah was faithful to the LORD for a long time, and during that time he and his nation prospered. Rising to power after a long period of decline, he restored to Judah much of the strength and influence that had been Israel's in the days of David and Solomon. He had a series of military successes against the Philistines, the Gurbaal, the Mehunims, and the Ammonites. He fortified Jerusalem, whose walls had been broken down just before he took office, and he built military outposts throughout the land as well. Being an inventor, he constructed turreted crossbows and catapults, mounting these in towers at his outposts. He was also active in agriculture, digging wells and planting vineyards throughout the land.”

Pretty productive dude really. Prosperous even. Like Creflo Dollar prosperity. The story continues...

“Unfortunately, later in his 52-year reign Uzziah presumed to alter the worship of the LORD, placing himself in the spotlight by entering the temple and burning incense, a duty reserved by the LORD for the priests only. A group of 81 priests confronted the king, informing him of his violation — a courageous act, given the unquestioned power of the king in those days. Uzziah became furious. While he raged at the priests, the LORD showed his support for the priests by afflicting Uzziah with leprosy, which became immediately visible on his forehead. As no leprous person was permitted in the temple, the priests began urging the now-unclean king to leave. Uzziah, himself in a panic, rushed away.”

Yuck. Bit of an unceremonious exit for a man who clearly WAS a great man who was greatly used by God. But then got too big for his britches. God desires every soul... but He also seems quite willing to step over anyone in order to obtain the full affection of His Bride (His Church).

The Bible doesn't talk much about it... but I've often wondered how God might have personally continually reached out to King Uzziah. But because of King Uzziah's sin, God big B blessing was pulled to a certain degree... along with the ability of others to reach the Holy of Holies.

Pride is not a good thing to fall into. Sure doesn’t seem to be a personality trait that God likes too much. Even though God saves and redeems and restores and releases, when you step in the way of what God is doing and attempt to usurp power and redirect glory, there’s a good chance that God is going to pull his favor from your life and move on to someone else... because of his intense love for His Bride. Not because he doesn't love you anymore... but because he DOES love you as just one of many parts of His bride. You see, He's not a respecter of persons.

In the year that King Uzziah died... Isaiah was commissioned. Noting the coinciding of the King's Death and the release of Isaiah's prophetic journey of repentance and restoration must hold importance. There were other wicked Kings to come but something was significant about Uzziah. I think some of this was about the fact that Uzziah strengthened himself. Contrast that with the picture of Isaiah who saw the glory of the lord and his first reaction was to say:

"Woe to me!" I cried. "I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty."

God's desire for His Bride to be with Him is intense and He'll do what He needs to to protect her.

When my wife and I were engaged during our college years, she was at church in Brantford while I was away at school in Welland one night. Some creepy old man at the church did something to her that was (in the long-run and grander scheme of things) minor... but at the time it truly made Krissy feel EXTREMELY uncomfortable, borderlining on violated. She called me and told me and I was FURIOUS. How dare someone even THINK of messing with MY bride.

I felt a crazy kind of man. I had to get to her but had a lot of obstacles in my way. First off... I had no car and was an hour and a half away. I had classes in the morning and I knew I'd theoretically be able to do nothing more than I could over the phone. Thankfully, I was renting a room in the house of a local pastor and his wife who were also councilors. She told me, "Go... she just needs to know you're there".

So in the middle of the night, I found a way home. First thing in the morning... my male mind was racing about what I wanted to do to this @#$%%^& who dared even look at my future bride inappropriately. Then I saw her... and we hugged ... for a long teary time. Turns out that was all either of us needed.

God needs His Bride and The Bride needs it's Groom. Out of love, God can and will do what is needed to be done to make this relationship work. In the love story... I certainly wouldn't want to be the one known by my death though. As Bono put it,

"There's nothing hippie about my picture of Christ. The Gospels paint a picture of a very demanding, sometimes divisive love, but love it is."

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