1 Chronicles 3-4 – A Glimmer of Hope

Watching the news, with all its stories of tragedy and corruption, can challenge your optimism.

But once in a while, you get a tidbit of good news breaking through the negative drone. A human interest story that catches your attention and gives you hope in the midst of all the negative.

This occurs in 1 Chronicles chapters 3-4. 1 Chronicles chapter 3 begins by listing the sons King David had by his many wives and concubines. There, you find the son of a woman with whom David committed adultery…later murdering her husband and lying about it. Also included in the list is the son of the daughter of a foreign king. This son would later rebel against his father David.

Then, 1 Chronicles chapter 4 outlines the greedy and murderous accumulation of land, property, and towns by the descendants of Simeon.

But, in the midst of this darkness, there’s a two-verse ray of hope about a man named Jabez. (1 Chron. 4:9-10) Out of distress and pain, he grew to become one of the most distinguished men of his time. He lived a life of blessing and accumulation, all because of his loyalty and dependence on the God of Israel. This little human interest story catches our attention and gives us hope that we too can be something different in the midst of droning bad news.

But be careful. It’s easy to corrupt this story and turn its focus from one of total dependence on God to one of finding the formula to get more stuff. The first approach will improve the bad news, while the second will just add to it.

The Silent Killers of Marriage

“Acting for the first time in 14 years, the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology redefined high blood pressure as a reading of 130 over 80, down from 140 over 90. The change means that 46 percent of US adults, many of them under the age of 45, now will be considered hypertensive.” (bostonglobe.com)

High blood pressure is considered the “silent killer,” because when you have high blood pressure, there are typically no obvious signs. Many people who have high blood pressure feel just fine.  But the undetected increase in blood pressure puts them at increased risk of heart disease, disability, and death.

What does this have to do with marriage…beside the fact that I’m going to have to change my diet and exercise? Just like high blood pressure can be a silent killer physically, there are some things that can be silent killers to your marriage relationally. Here are a just few…

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Accumulation or Appreciation?

Depositphotos_18473781_xsMaybe you’ve seen this…a preschooler is sitting on the floor playing with a toy. They’re perfectly content with the toy they have, until they see another child playing with a different toy. Then the preschooler wants the toy the other child has. They don’t want to just exchange toys. They want both toys!

It’s funny in preschoolers, but it’s not so funny in adults. Yet so many of us get caught up in accumulating things rather than appreciating what we have.

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