Rehoboam was the son of Solomon and took over the Kingdom from his famous and wise father. The third king of Israel, he quickly proved himself to be as foolish as his father was wise. His pattern was as predictable as the instructions on a shampoo bottle:
(On a completely unimportant aside- instructions to wash your hair? Really? Is it that hard?)
Rehoboam's pattern was more like:
- Be prideful and arrogant because things were going well
- Do something really stupid
- Experience painful consequences
- Repent and have God step in to fix things
Reading his story frustrates me. I wonder, why couldn't he have learned from the beating he took at the first big stupid? Why did he keep repeating the same mistakes?
I am not sure why I wonder. After all stupid mistakes with difficult consequences have been repeated by me over and over. Maybe I didn't learn from my flub ups for the same reason Rehoboam didn't learn from his.
He did evil because he did not set his heart to seek the Lord. -II Chronicles 12:14
If evil actions result from a lack of setting my heart on Jesus, I had better check what is my heart set on.
I am old enough to remember navigating by a paper map. I am NOT so old I remember navigating by a sextant or the stars, but I did have well developed map skills. I added the little red numbers from one town to the next to find out how far we still were from our destination. I studied the key to identify the symbols. I learned origami as I tried to fold the unwieldy map so only the pertinent section showing.
Now I type destination and my phone does the rest. Where is the skill in that?
As long as I have the right address my map will tell me, I mean literally tell me, where to go.
Rehoboam did not "set his heart to seek the Lord." Where is GPS of my heart directing me? Is it set to seek God or to seek self? Is it set to seek the approval of others or Jesus? Is the path for the accumulation of wealth, prestige, or temporary achievements plugged in, or is it the narrow path, which few follow?
Is it set to seek first the Kingdom of God, letting Him add everything else I need?
If I am going to avoid the same destructive cycle as Rehoboam I am going to have to be serious, every day, about setting the GPS of my heart on God.
"Now set your heart and your soul to seek the Lord your God." -I Chronicles 22:19a (NKJV)
"And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father know that you need them. But seek His kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well." -Luke 12:29-31 (NIV)
"If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth." Colossians 3:1,2
Where is my heart set today? If I don't want the world to dictate where I wind up, I need to check my internal GPS and make some course corrections.
Here are my instructions:
- Set my heart and mind on things above
- Seek the Lord and His kingdom