Monday: March 16, 2020

Reference text: 2 Kings 5:1-15

2 Kings 5:13 And his servants came near, and spake unto him, and said, My father, if the prophet had bid thee do some great thing, wouldest thou not have done it? how much rather then, when he saith to thee, Wash, and be clean?

Naaman’s story draws my attention to a social experiment about two rooms of people who were waiting anxiously for information to be relayed to them. Amongst each group, actors had been planted: one set of actors were tasked with stirring up anger and the other set, with ensuring a calm and collected attitude while waiting. The results were polar opposite.

The entire room with actors planted to stir up emotions erupted into utter chaos with bouts of anger, shouting and demanding for information. On the other hand, the control group were more relaxed as actors moved to calm nerves when signs of anger appeared to emerge. The emotions of the crowd seemed to resonate with the actors who performed their task as assigned. You might be wondering how relevant this is to today’s text?

When we take a look at the account, Naaman was left fuming and disappointed when Elisha’s instruction came via a proxy. He wondered why he was not worth even a face to face audience with ‘a prophet’ or a touch of his hand. This is where his servants came in saying ‘would you not have strived to do the task assigned if it was more difficult? Here, all he says is go take a bath’. To this, he agreed.

Beloved, Naaman stands out as a very interesting character, particularly his relationship with his servants. They seemed to resonate at a different frequency than he did, personality and emotion-wise. So while he was angry and fuming, they didn’t jump unto the same wagon as he, but became the voices of reason. We need people like that in our lives and to also become such to others. Let us not simply be drawn unto the emotional roller-coaster others may be on, but become the voices of reason when needed.


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