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“Uzziah son of Amaziah began to rule over Judah in the twenty-seventh year of the reign of King Jeroboam II of Israel.  He was sixteen years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem fifty-two years. His mother was Jecoliah, from Jerusalem.  He did what was pleasing in the Lord's sight, just as his father, Amaziah, had done.” (NLT)
Two things in this text intrigue me. One I will mention in passing, the other is the theme of our worship service today. If you are familiar with my ministry passion at all, you know that I believe that all members of the church are ministers, called and gifted by God to change the world—even if they are just sixteen. I believe that churches should empower their members to minister based on three things, their calling, gifts and their character. Certainly, other factors are at play, but these three ingredients are essential. Look at verse 2, Uzziah was sixteen years old when he began ruling.
He was not alone. The pages of the Bible are sprinkled with young people who are effective in their service to the Lord; people like Daniel, David, John Mark and Rhoda. Let the full weight of verse 2 sink in–this sixteen-year-old boy was King of Judah. What is even more remarkable is that verse 3 indicates that he was a good king.
OK, let’s do a reality check. Most sixteen year olds aren’t ready to be King. To be honest with you, I was nervous both times my sons took the car for their first solo trip. OK, let’s be really honest–I’m still nervous when I think they are on the road somewhere. That’s what makes this verse so amazing. God uses ordinary people with character whom He calls and gifts to do extraordinary things–even if they are only sixteen years old.
The other thing I notice in this text is that Uzziah wasn’t blazing new trails here–he was following his father’s example. Look at verse 3 “He did what was pleasing in the Lord's sight, just as his father, Amaziah, had done.”
As a son, I relate to this verse. It is easy to get sentimental on a day like Father’s Day and for our words not reflect complete reality. My father is not a perfect man. Neither was yours. Neither am I. Overall, I am a better man today because Larry Wilson is my father. A few years ago, a retired pastor (who was a part of the congregation I was serving) stopped by the office to pray for me. Though I don't remember everything he said in his prayer, one phrase does stick in my mind. He prayed, "Lord, bless our pastor as he stands on his Father's shoulders to minister to us." Until that day, I never really thought about the advantages that I have because I grew up in the home of Larry and Barbara Wilson, but since then I've never forgotten them.
My father has an impressive list of accomplishments in his life. Even in retirement, he is doing a substantial ministry and continues to be a world changer. However, in my opinion, his greatest list of accomplishments he shares with my mother. It is this one: Tim, Ted, Jim & Lori. Each of his children, in their own way, has made the world a better place. Potentially, our children are our greatest legacies.
Verse 3 says, “He did what was pleasing in the Lord's sight, just as his father, Amaziah, had done.” How does a father leave a legacy in his children?
It starts with spending time with them.
One of the greatest struggles I’ve faced is work-life balance.
There are seasons of life where my work has demanded almost all of my strength
and energy and other times when my family needed an extra portion of Thank
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