One of the oldest form of sports, is ‘horse racing’. Archaeological records indicate that horse races occurred in Ancient Greece, Babylon, Syria and Egypt. Somewhere around 648 BC. Initial purpose was primarily enjoying a form of sport, as well as check out the best horses. A distance was set for the horses to run… basically a competition to test which one is best. Over a period of time ofcourse ,it started generating lot of revenues to the economy as well, but that was much later. Once money was involved, things became different. But before that, best of the trainers were hired for training these beautiful horses, with most up to date ideas. Gentry was extremely sophisticated and took genuine interest in the horses . A game for the aristocrats. Today it is more for gambling. Primary purpose got lost.
20 September, 1946 (72 years ago), Cannes film festival was founded. Purpose? The annual film festival held in France, previews new films of all genres including documentaries, from all around the world. Earlier days the participants were genuinely interested in the new movies, new ideas and concepts. It was less about people and more about‘films’. Today, it’s more about ‘who wore what’ and what they wore which day. Sounds crazy? Yes it does! The real reason the festival was founded, got lost. Now, designers became the need. Best of the designers sponsor because now, the Hollywood stars need to showcase their dresses and entire concentration shifted from films, to the designs the stars wear at red carpet. Whether the dresses are hired or bought by the so called celebrities, from designer’s collection, designers get all the promotions.
Same things happen in spiritual realm too.
Why things happen, how they happen, the purpose of God’s allowing situations in our life, and above all ….how WE deal with it, all have a reason., a purpose.
Take for example a story in the book of 2 Kings chapter 5. Three people involved in the story are Elisha (man of God), Naaman (Commander of the army of the king of Syria, a great man of valor, respected and acceptable by his master since by him LORD had given victory to Syria) and Gehazi (Elisha’s servant). Now Naaman was a mighty man, but was a ‘leper’.
Great teachings are hidden in these scriptural messages, only that we do not pay attention enough to understand them. Look at the situation how God orchestrated.
A little maid was brought as a captive out of the land of Israel, who waited on Naaman’s wife. That small girl knew Elisha, the man of God. As she mentions him to her mistress, Naaman (with permission from the king) set out on a journey to Israel, with 10 talent so f silver, 6,000 shekels of gold, and 10 changes of raiment. When Naaman reached king of Israel for his healing, the king of Israel mistook it as the Syrian King seeking to stir a confusion between them. The King of Israel rent his clothes .
When Elisha heard about this, he sent a message to the king, ‘why have you rent your clothes? LET NAAMAN COME NOW TO ME AND HE SHALL KNOW THAT THERE IS A PROPHET IN ISRAEL” (2 kings 5:8) .
As Naaman reaches Elisha, he was told, “go and wash in Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall be restored and you shall be clean” But Naaman was very angry. He simply could not believe, that God’s healing and restoration powers could be so simple. He was expecting lot of honour and great reception from Elisha ( since he was honoured by the king). Also he was expecting theatrics. People are so used to dramatics and theatrical behaviour, that they simply cannot fathom the fact that receiving God’s goodness could be so easy and simple . Naaman’s pride almost kept him from receiving healing from God.
2 kings 5:13-14 records, on requests of his servants, he obeyed as Elisha directed and his flesh was restored back like that of a little child and he was clean.
2 kings 5:15….Naaman witnesses “there is NO GOD IN ALL EARTH BUT IN ISRAEL.”
2 kings 5:17, “…….For your servant will henceforth offer neither burnt offering nor sacrifice to other gods, but ONLY TO THE LORD (a born again)
(Shash Grewal (Shashwati) is a “Scriptural Motivational Writer, who explain’s life’s, common principles, in a very lucid manner so that the younger generation can relate to the solutions, she offers through her writing, to all the problems they face on a daily basis.)
Now the third man involved in the story , ‘Gehazi” servant of Elisha.
He felt in his heart, that his master Elisha has been too kind in not receiving from Naaman ( in return for healing of leprosy). So he ran after him and lied on his master’s name(we find people deceiving each other similar way using our master GOD”S name). 2 kings 5:22, “give two talents of silver to two young men from Ephraim and two changes of garments. “ Elisha’s spirit had followed Gehazi (2 kings 5:26). So what Gehazi lost? He and his offspring were lepers forever . One small mistake cost him so much.
What all we learn in this chapter?
First person in story Naaman, had to learn humility. His pride almost kept him from experiencing God’s mercies.
Second person Elisha, a true prophet of God prepared by God in the land of Israel, was used mightily for God’s glory for all to see what splendid things God can do in simplicity. Without much effort , a soul was saved (Naaman) who received healing from his situation as well as left Israel as a ‘witness’ for God of Israel.
Third man was Gehazi. He was living so near to his master, a prophet of God. Could have learnt much, done much for the glory of God, but he lost his purpose in life for the love of money. He couldn’t interpret the reason for God’s orchestrating the entire events from Naaman’s coming to Israel , till his healing. Syrians had to know “God of Israel”. A powerful man from amongst them had to receive that kind of healing to be able to understand the powers of God. It wasn’t time for gathering money, garments and other earthly gifts. When ‘other things’ get involved, people get distracted from the main agenda( God’s work) and get lost more in worldly things and go far away from the spirit of God……
One of the greatest preachers of all time, Billy Graham, spent his entire lifetime preaching John 3:16 “For God so loved the world……..”. I doubt we have heard such powerful impacting messages like Graham’s teachings. His presentations were simple yet powerful which touched millions of lives around the globe. How marvellously God used Graham and his life for impacting people’s lives.
His purpose? Jesus!
(Shash Grewal(Shashwati) is a scriptural Motivational Writer, Speaker, Spiritual Teacher, Preacher and an Evangelist.)
Jesus, the ‘Messiah’ whose ministry was on feet, with his 12 disciples, trusting only on God ( The Father) and His Holy Spirit to lead. He chose to leave the glory of Heaven to come down on earth to teach us. But we are the ones who are getting distracted. Our purpose of ‘witnessing for Lord’ is getting a bit of track. We sincerely need to introspect, why are we here. What is our main purpose? Is it truly Him or something else along the way? It would do us real good, if our purpose is Him, because if it’s not, we have serious answers to give to Him one day. We better be prepared.
(“”The writer has been a Cover page Model for various fashion magazines , anchored various musical shows for youth Channels and a (short film) filmmaker for Discovery Channel. Currently busy writing her own book””)