Then the king of Israel gathered the prophets together, four hundred men, and said to them, “Shall we go to battle against Ramoth-gilead, or shall I refrain?” And they said, “Go up, for God will give it into the hand of the king.” But Jehoshaphat said, “Is there not here another prophet of the LORD of whom we may inquire?” And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “There is yet one man by whom we may inquire of the LORD, Micaiah the son of Imlah; but I hate him, for he never prophesies good concerning me, but always evil.” And Jehoshaphat said, “Let not the king say so.”
– 2 Chronicles 18:5-7
Ahab, who was following false gods, inquired of many prophets as to whether or not this battle would succeed. They all agreed it would succeed, and that was good enough for Ahab. But Jehoshaphat remembered one other prophet, Micaiah, whom Ahab had dismissed because he never said what he wanted to hear.
At that point, God no longer holds Micaiah responsible for being an honest mediator between him and Ahab. Ahab is the one the blame falls upon for not listening to God’s voice through his prophet.
Am I distancing myself from people who honestly speak the things from God that I need to hear? Am I surrounding myself only with people whose words are flattering to me?
When was the last time I heard a harsh word that I needed to let persuade me, and how did I respond? Do I treat that person who delivered it any differently? Have I distanced myself from them or brought myself closer?
God, help me to always be looking for opportunities to be changed by the people through whom you speak. I don’t want to avoid those who have difficult instruction from you, thereby cutting myself off from your counsel. God, your word grows hands and feet and mouths to proclaim itself specifically to my case through your servants who are faithful to pick it up and speak hard truth to me. Don’t let me deny your Spirit working in them for my good.
This post is part of my Weekly REAP series. I’m posting these from my personal journal to share what God is teaching me, and to give some practical examples of the REAP method. I didn’t write any of these with publishing in mind, so forgive me if they don’t always wax eloquent. Here is some more information on the REAP study method.