Being different and Micaiah the Prophet
Walking in my favourite place last week I spotted this lonesome sunflower amidst a field of other yellow flowers. This brazen composite flower stood out. It reminded me of an Old Testament passage I had read earlier in the week. In 1 Kings ch22 King Jehoshaphat of Judah went to see King Ahab of Israel to consult about what to do about a place called Ramoth in Gilead. They were considering taking it back from the king of Syria. Wisely, Jehoshaphat counsels Ahab to check the will of God by asking Ahab's prophets of which he had 400. Of course they all prophesied that Ahab would be successful and that it was indeed God's will they should attack and reclaim Ramoth. But Jehoshaphat asks if there aren't any more prophets to ask. (That part always reminds me of the Prince in Cinderella asking if there were not any more daughters in the house to try on the glass slipper!) Ahab reluctantly summons Micaiah whom, he tells Jehoshaphat always prophesies things the King does not want to hear. Micaiah arrives and is asked to speak truthfully. I am always amused by the true prophets as they seem to have a great sense of humour and are not fazed at all by men in power. Micaiah, probably sarcastically, agrees with the 400 because he knows full well that is what the King wants to believe. But Ahab knows he is not telling the truth and orders Micaiah to speak with veracity. Micaiah tells him it will end badly if he goes to war for Ramoth in Gilead and, furthermore, he tells him of a vision he has seen of Heaven where a lying spirit is sent to go among Ahab's prophets and get them all to lie and not speak the word of God. Ahab is now quite narked and sends Micaiah to prison to exist on bread and water.
Micaiah was like the sunflower in my field above. He stood out and was not frightened of being different from everyone else. He was true to himself and to God. He had visions and access to a wider Universe and was not swayed by the opinions of others, even if he did have his little joke at first.
In our lives do we aim to be truthful or are we more concerned about how we fit into the the groups and communities we are surrounded by? Do we sacrifice truth in order to fit in and be like everyone else?
Walking in nature gives us pause for thought. We can learn from a simple flower.
On my walk I also saw lots of butterflies. Like this little brown meadow butterfly who let me get within a centimetre to take his picture. What delicate creatures butterflies are, and how beautiful. We are, as a race, destroying so much beauty. We have no time to stop and take in the little wonders that are around us each and every day.
I have been remarkably busy these past weeks, hence not much blogging. But now I am back to my routine I am out and about taking in the natural world as much as I can and listening, seeing, smelling and learning from it. I feel this inordinate love for every creature, leaf and flower and in return they emanate a deep peace that goes beyond anything my mind could conjure up.
By the way, do have a read of Kings I and II, they are most the fascinating of books.