2 Kings 5:7-19
“Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel. So please accept a gift from your servant.” Verse 15 (NIV)
I am amazed at video evidence that so many people are not willing to wear facemasks during the pandemic. Health experts say it is simple and one of the best ways to reduce the spread of the virus. Yet there are so many excuses as to why people will not wear them. By and large that is all they are, excuses.
Naaman is on a journey to seek healing from leprosy. He first goes to the king of Israel, but that king is not the source of healing. Elisha hears about this visitor from a foreign land and invites the king to send Naaman to him.
Naaman arrives at the house of Elisha, expecting to get a royal welcome and healing from the prophet himself. But instead a servant comes out and tells him to wash seven times in the Jordan River. Naaman’s expectations almost derail his hope filled journey. Military leaders are not given to take orders, especially from the servant of a prophet!
In this critical moment, however, Naaman’s own servants redirect his thinking. These unnamed servants respectfully challenge Naaman not to turn away from an “ordinary task” when he would have willingly done a much more difficult thing. Naaman wisely listens to these servants, humbles himself, and dips into the Jordan River.
Naaman obeys, somewhat haltingly, and he is healed. A journey that began with an unnamed servant girl from Israel ends with Naaman testifying that there is no God in the whole world except the God of Israel. Naaman’s unnamed servants are ordinary people whom God uses for his extraordinary purposes. Because of their words, a follower of God is given new life in the waters of the Jordan.
Gracious heavenly Father, thank you for the healing that comes when we humble ourselves before you. Thank you for the community of faith that can encourage us on our journey to you. Amen.