Over the past couple of weekends I have been volunteering in the 4s-K room at my church, teaching large group. You guys, I love this age. 4s-Kindergarten is my not-so-secret favorite age to teach. One of the stories I taught was about Josiah, the young king. We read about Josiah in 1 Chronicles 33-35 along with 2 Kings 21-23.
I started studying Josiah – the boy who became king at only 8 years old. Children’s Bibles, curriculum, and sermons make a big deal out of Josiah getting the crown at such a young age. This fact in the story stands out. But as I read through 2 Chronicles 34, I put Josiah’s story in a timeline.
- 8 Years Old – Josiah becomes king (2 Chronicles 34:1)
- 16 Years Old – Josiah seeks the God of his father David (2 Chronicles 34:3)
- 20 Years Old – Josiah begins to tear down altars to foreign gods (2 Chronicles 34:3-7)
- 26 Years Old – Josiah begins to repair the temple, where they find the Book of the Law (2 Chronicles 34:8); Josiah celebrates the Passover (2 Chronicles 35:1-19)
- For the rest of his life – Josiah led the Israelites to follow the Lord (2 Chronicles 34:33)
- 39 Years Old – Josiah dies
Imagine being the one digging around the temple and finding the Book of the Law. That’s what happened. Josiah’s restoration of the temple sent craftsmen and musicians and carpenters into the Lord’s temple and Hilkiah the priest finds the Book of the Law and he made sure it was sent to King Josiah where it was read aloud. The rest is history as Josiah learns of the covenant and leads God’s people faithfully until his death 13 years later.
When you read Josiah’s response to hearing the word of the Lord, one thing becomes clear. He was devastated. Josiah tears his robes! He realizes that God’s people have been disobedient to what was inside the book and he quickly resolves to change that reality. I’m sure Josiah wished he had read God’s Word much sooner instead of stumbling across 18 years into his reign as king.
Here’s my question for you: As you head into the fall, where a new ministry season will kick off, where kids will transition to new classes and rooms, where curriculum changes and new programs will launch, are you actively investing time into reading and studying God’s Word? Will God’s Word be the foundation for your ministry activity or will it take you a few months before you stumble across it? Friends, we cannot abandon God’s Word. The Word of God must shape everything we do because it declares all that we are in Christ. If you’re not on a regular reading plan, let me encourage you to check out a few that have worked well for me in the past.
Sacred Ordinary Days is something I’ve been using for the past year – it combines spiritual disciplines with a daily planner
Scripture Union’s Encounter With God is an excellent tool