This chapter we discussed Josiah (2 Kings 22-23) and how his actions were greatly impacted by his image of God. Before his reign, the people were following after other gods and not living a holy life as God had revealed through the written word they had at that time (the Torah--first five books of the old testament). In fact, Josiah didn't even have that written revelation--but he had still set his heart to follow in the ways of David (who desired to please God). Many years into his reign while they were repairing the temple, a copy of the Torah was found. When Josiah listened to a reading of God's Word, he was heartbroken. I can only imagine he had realized just how short of God's mark they were actually falling and it also reveals to us a right heart attitude/response to the revelation of God's Word and it's convicting work in our lives. He didn't just stop there--he acted on that conviction and went to work removing all things idolatrous from the kingdom--even so much as to re-institute the observance of Passover which hadn't been celebrated for hundreds of years.
Josiah was given the opportunity to hear from God--to be a firsthand witness to the revelation of the God he desired to serve. Josiah's understanding of God and His great holiness and intolerance for sin elicited a proper response--a conviction for change. I was blessed by a quote Amy had included in her blog from the author/pastor Francis Chan:
We should be terrified if we have mastered the art of becoming convicted and doing nothing in response.
That's where I'm at right now--broken, struggling, grieving...convicted. I am so thankful for the biblical training I have received and that I know with my head that God is Good, Faithful, and True--but that's not enough. God wants change. He wants to bring us from where we are--lost sinners completely separated from a just God--to a holy people sanctified to be eventually seated at His table. My heart is to bring glory to God. At this point, my worship feels inhibited/hindered. I hate it. I want to be transparent and I want to be changed. Will you join me?
A few practical steps you can take to let God change you....
Be exposed to God's Word through study and teaching
Accept Christ's saving work on the cross and follow Him as outlined in Scripture.
Be changed--act on the convictions revealed by the Holy Spirit.