August 30 | Bible in a Year: Psalms 129–131; 1 Corinthians 11:1–16
[Josiah] began to seek the God of his father David.
2 Chronicles 34:3
READ 2 Chronicles 34:1–8
A stately sunflower stood on its own in the center of a lonely stretch of national highway, just a few feet from the fast lane. As I drove past, I wondered how it had grown there with no other sunflowers visible for miles. Only God could create a plant so hardy it could thrive so close to the roadway in the gray gravel lining the median. There it was, thriving, swaying gently in the breeze and cheerfully greeting travelers as they hurried by.
The Old Testament tells the story of a faithful king of Judah who also showed up unexpectedly. His father and grandfather had enthusiastically served other gods; but after Josiah had been in power for eight years, “while he was still young, he began to seek the God of his father David” (2 Chronicles 34:3). He sent workmen to “repair the temple of the Lord” (v. 8), and as they did they discovered the Book of the Law (the first five books of the Old Testament; v. 14). God then inspired Josiah to lead the entire nation of Judah to return to the faith of their ancestors, and they served the Lord “as long as [Josiah] lived” (v. 33).
Our God is the master of unanticipated mercies. He’s able to cause great good to spring up unexpectedly out of the hard gravel of life’s most unfavorable circumstances. Watch Him closely. He may do it again today.
By James Banks
REFLECT & PRAY
What mercies have you seen from God that you never anticipated? How does the thought that He’s able to bring about unexpected good give you hope today?
Heavenly Father, I praise You for never changing. Your mercies are “new every morning!” (Lamentations 3:23). Help me to look forward to what You have for me today.
Second Chronicles 34–35 build on the account given in 2 Kings 22–23; however, additional details are included in 2 Chronicles. For example, 2 Kings 22 shows Josiah’s actions as primarily taking place during the eighteenth year of his reign, but 2 Chronicles 34 details the breakdown of events between the eighth, twelfth, and eighteenth years. The varying details don’t indicate inaccuracies; rather, they present a more complete picture of the Bible with each book including a different emphasis: 2 Kings focuses on Josiah as a king whereas 2 Chronicles uses his story to present the importance of the Passover.
By Julie Schwab