Wednesday 25 March 2009

Member Character(s)—4 of 4

A Glimpse at the Character of Saint Micaiah
Honourary Feast Day 25 March

Have you heard of this Old Testament prophet—and saint?
Probably not.
That’s because after being publicly ridiculed, publicly accused of not having the Spirit, and publicly struck in the face for not prophesizing favourably to Ahab the king of Israel, he was thrown into prison and never heard of again in Biblical history (1 Kings 22 and 2 Chronicles 18). Ahab later died in battle, according to the word of Micaiah as opposed to the false assurances of hundreds of other “prophets.”
Nathan and Nothing
Micaiah was a “Nathan” who risked like Nathan, obeyed God like Nathan by confronting a king, yet did not fare well like Nathan. He is a forgotten Nathan. He is like, Nothing. That is why we are remembering him, and all those like him, on this his honourary feast day, 25 March.
Courage as Strangers and Pilgrims
“All of these died in faith, without having received the promises, but having seen and accepted these promises with pleasure from afar, they confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth” (Hebrews 11:13). May we too have the courage to follow in their footsteps, even in the face of risk--by speaking the truth in love to ourselves, to God, and to fellow humans. Such love is the measure of our member care, and of our member character.
Reflection and Discussion
**Micaiah said, “As the Lord lives, what the Lord says that I will speak.” Give an example of when you had to speak and act with such determination.
**Micaiah’s concluding words were, “Listen, all peoples.”
What were the people then (and what are we) supposed to listen to?
Note that Micaiah is not the same as the author of the Book of Micah.


Jeff Whitfield said...

AMEN! At this stage I dare not list examples but it is a frequent enough occurance. There is nothing glamorous about being a prophet (member care counselor) and it is often a lonely calling. However, we do not work for the praise of men, but for the "well done good and faithful servant"! Thanks for this post, Kelly. I pray you are well.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Jeff. Yes doing great!

I think we esteem "prophets", at least until until they come and sit in our pew, or our living room, or our inner world, or otherwise inconcenience us with little things like truth and areas in which we need to grow.

On a realted note--I am reading "Mistakes Were Made (But Not By Me)" by Tavis and Aronson. Brilliant. Gets at the heart of self-justification and how we all deal with cognitive dissonance. In a sense maybe how we all think we are sort of like "prophets" or at least how we think we are mostly right. A great read, backed by lots of interesting research in social psychology.

The other side of the coin is when we sense we need to speak "prophetically" (or simply just to say the truth) in a situation. And we are in fact, "right." It is not about self-justification. And there can be consequneces and risks of course. For me, something is right to do, not because there are no risks involved, but becasue it is the right thing to do. It's about moral courage.

All the best and keep up your excellent work!