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Isaiah 37:14-29, Hezekiah’s Prayer

Narrative Lectionary Key Verse for Today

Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers and read it; then Hezekiah went up to the house of the Lord and spread it before the Lord.
— Isaiah 37:14

NL Daily Devotion for Wednesday, November 21, 2018

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by Rev. Stefanie Fauth, Clergy Stuff


What’s your first instinct when you get bad news?

If you’re like me, there’s probably much lamenting - or some complaining that happens.

You may even think to say, “Why, God, why?”

But do you pray?

I do sometimes - but more often then not, my prayers are for what would be best for me.

Hezekiah, however, prays for what would be best for God - what would show Sennacherib - and everyone - that God is the TRUE God to follow.

And that prayer is effective.

It makes me wonder - what might happen if we condition ourselves to pray for what honors God instead of just for what we want?

Might prayers get different answers?

Or might it shape our own actions as we move forward?


Narrative Lectionary Daily Reading:

Isaiah 37:14-29

Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers and read it; then Hezekiah went up to the house of the Lord and spread it before the Lord. And Hezekiah prayed to the Lord, saying: “O Lord of hosts, God of Israel, who are enthroned above the cherubim, you are God, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; you have made heaven and earth.Incline your ear, O Lord, and hear; open your eyes, O Lord, and see; hear all the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to mock the living God. Truly, O Lord, the kings of Assyria have laid waste all the nations and their lands, and have hurled their gods into the fire, though they were no gods, but the work of human hands—wood and stone—and so they were destroyed. So now, O Lord our God, save us from his hand, so that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you alone are the Lord.”

Then Isaiah son of Amoz sent to Hezekiah, saying: “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Because you have prayed to me concerning King Sennacherib of Assyria, this is the word that the Lord has spoken concerning him: She despises you, she scorns you— virgin daughter Zion; she tosses her head—behind your back, daughter Jerusalem. Whom have you mocked and reviled? Against whom have you raised your voice and haughtily lifted your eyes? Against the Holy One of Israel! By your servants you have mocked the Lord, and you have said, ‘With my many chariots I have gone up the heights of the mountains, to the far recesses of Lebanon; I felled its tallest cedars, its choicest cypresses; I came to its remotest height, its densest forest. I dug wells and drank waters, I dried up with the sole of my foot all the streams of Egypt.’ Have you not heard that I determined it long ago? I planned from days of old what now I bring to pass, that you should make fortified cities crash into heaps of ruins, while their inhabitants, shorn of strength, are dismayed and confounded; they have become like plants of the field and like tender grass, like grass on the housetops, blighted before it is grown. I know your rising up and your sitting down, your going out and coming in, and your raging against me. Because you have raged against me and your arrogance has come to my ears, I will put my hook in your nose and my bit in your mouth; I will turn you back on the way by which you came.

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