Commander. Wealthy. Highly favored by his master. Victor. A man of valor but…
Naaman was a leper.
He followed the advice of an Israelite servant girl who told his wife that a prophet in Samaria would cure him of his leprosy. He took men, changes of clothing, gold and silver which today would amount to 3.3 million dollars. After first going to the King of Israel, Elisha the man of God sends for him.
His entourage along with their horses and chariots arrive at Elisha’s house. There Naaman stood before the door. Perhaps he looked down at his discolored hands or touched a sore wondering if this would be the final time he would see the effects of this disease. Elisha doesn’t answer the door but sends his messenger.
“Go and wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall be restored, and you shall be clean.” But…
Naaman was prideful.
He presumed Elisha would come out to him, call upon the Lord and do some kind of abracadabra wave over the place to cure him. How dare he be expected to wash himself seven times in the Jordan. He knew of far better waters. He went away in a rage but…
Naaman chose obedience.
After the encouragement of his servants, Naaman humbles himself and enters the Jordan.
“…and his flesh was restored like the flesh of a little child, and he was clean.”
God worked another miracle in the Jordan and honored Naaman’s humility.
Naaman was healed.
The source of Naaman’s anger was unmet expectations. He had a different idea as to how his healing should take place. We can be like Naaman placing high expectations on people or God and when they are not fulfilled in the way we imagine we get angry. God wanted to humble the commander and man of wealth by requiring him to do what he never would have imagined himself to do.
So it is with us. Anger fuels our pride. We may desire the better waters but God desires obedience in the muddy ones.
This was adapted from my notes at a Life Action Ministries Revival Summit.