28 March 2011

2 Kings 5:1-15

"But his servants approached him [Naaman] and said to him, 'Father, if the prophet had commanded you to do something difficult, would you not have done it? How much more, when all he said to you was, "Wash and be clean?"'" (v. 13)


Here is a miraculous transformation, not just of the physical body but also of the 'soul'. Naaman is cross when Elisha suggests he does something as mundane as washing to cure his leprosy, and it is easy to understand why. Here is Naaman, a great man and a competent soldier, but also afflicted with an illness which makes him a social outcast. This uncleanliness will have consumed him, and he will have struggled with it for many years. Can you imagine how he felt when Elisha told him he could just go and wash? However, this washing is not like washing away a dirty mark, it is an act of faith. So stripping off and washing somewhere as public as the river requires Naaman to lower himself to the level of his servants. He has to swallow his pride and believe that God can make him well.

God offers each one of us an opportunity to be healed, cleansed and welcomed back into God's loving arms. Once we accept that we are all equally unclean and equally in need of God's love, we can be reborn as children of God. This is both an act of confession and an act of faith.

To Ponder

Are there occasions in your life when you have needed to swallow your pride? How did it make you feel? Hand those feelings over to God.

How can we show that we believe everyone is equally in need of God's healing as we confess our faith to those we meet?

Many of us have things which we have struggled with for many years, and it is easy to accept them as something we cannot change. Is today the day when you take another step towards being everything God intends you to be?

Bible notes author

Mia Briggs

Mia Briggs used to be a local preacher. She is now a member of the student clergy in the Metropolitcan Community Church.