Today, I want to continue looking at the fascinating story of Naaman, the Syrian leper who sought the God of Israel for help. After the King of Aram sent a letter to the King of Israel asking for healing on behalf of his commander, the Hebrew king reacted in a rather surprising manner. Instead of being grateful for the opportunity to build a bridge to a neighboring nation and to share the power of his God, his response was one of distrust and despondency. The Bible says that he tore his robes in grief, because he was certain that the King of Aram was setting a trap for him in an attempt to wage war. Since he knew that healing was traditionally reserved for the Jews, he was afraid that the Lord wouldn’t respond to Naaman’s earnest request and that he would be stuck with a bloody battle instead. However, in his assumption, he failed to consider the fact that his “enemy,” the King of Aram, may have had more compassion than he imagined and that he was simply looking out for the interest of his friend. Even Elisha, upon hearing that his king had torn his robes, sent a message questioning his emotional response.
My friend, especially in the present time, I encourage you not to assume the worst. Unlike the King of Israel in this story, don’t jump to conclusions and try not to catastrophize unexpected circumstances. Even if past experiences have left you feeling vulnerable and prone to cynicism, invoke the Lord’s wisdom and welcome His love that believes the best about others. With the help of the Holy Spirit, you are shrewd as a serpent and gentle as a dove, and He has equipped you to guard your heart while always giving people a chance to prove their intentions. As natural as it is to desire safety, have the courage to relinquish preconceived notions, and watch as your Savior does something miraculous through your surrendered trust.