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If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

James 1:5 

Last time, we looked at what the cat and king chose to see. The cat saw a mouse instead of the queen of England, and King Rehoboam saw riches and flamboyant living instead of service that pays (https://elihasthots.net/2022/05/06/pussy-cat-pussy-cat-i/).

Immediately after his coronation, his first important decision cost him 83% of his kingdom (1 Kings 12:6-11)! He marshalled an army with the 17% left to start a civil war, but God stopped what would have been a bloodbath. So the two sides’ leaders built fortifications along their borders – forgetting that they were descendants of one ancestor! Then they began running battles.

After about 3 years, things began to get comfortable and easy, so Rehoboam’s wife, a worshipper of Asherah, drew him into idolatry. Two years later, Shishak, king of Egypt, attacked. Rehoboam and his elders decided God was right in not defending them against Shishak, so they humbled themselves before God. When God saw His people’s repentance, he prevented Egypt from completely annihilating Judah. So Egypt stripped Solomon’s palaces of all their valuables. And to comfort himself, Rehoboam had imitations made from very cheap materials. From then on, “he did evil, because he prepared not his heart to seek the LORD” (2 Chronicles 12:14).

So, in a few short years, Rehoboam, through his uninformed or ill-informed choices, had reduced a kingdom of twelve powerful tribes to only two. He had lost all the wealth and splendour his father had gathered. And finally, he had led the nation into idolatry. If you can’t improve on the good your father has achieved, the least you can do is to maintain it. He had succeeded in reducing Israel from grace to grass. It is a sad day indeed to wake up to the fact that you led out or were part of the group that managed to bring a civilization, a nation, a society, a system, an organization, a company, an institution, a family, a growing dream right down to its knees through visionless-ness (Prov 29:18). In your quiet moments, you will find your conscience playing out all your stupid choices in your head. Over and over again. Until, of course, you learn to rationalize and apportion blame to others (Prov 28:13). Then, once you can blame someone else, you can give your heart some temporary rest. Yes! Temporary rest.

© Kobu Agency (https://unsplash.com)

But the Bible is replete with lessons for kings in the Bible. His own father, King Solomon, after his unfortunate experiences, dedicated the first part of Proverbs 31 to advising kings. Furthermore, in Solomon’s own life, we can draw the following lessons:

  • Great leaders let go of fame and fortune to chase after knowledge and wisdom (check 1 Kings 3:1-15)
  • Great leaders reach out to wise counsellors (Proverbs 24:6)
  • Great leaders exemplify and encourage integrity (Proverbs 16:12, 13)
  • Great leaders are always alert (Proverbs 25:2)
  • Great leaders seek out and weed out divisive subordinates (Proverbs 25:3,4)[1]

To avoid that, you need to unlearn the foolish and relearn what is wise. Take personal responsibility for your brightest future.Be a learner for the rest of your life. Be interactive! Get current, expert, credible information. Stay current and continue reading books that help you hone your skills. Be interactive. Be a lifelong learner. Then focus on using that information honourably and creatively. Remember, we are never wise until we put the excellent knowledge we have gained to the good of others. Let God Himself guide you. James 1:5 But if any man among you is without wisdom, let him make his request to God, who gives freely to all without an unkind word, and it will be given to him. Choosing the right is a very crucial step in everyone’s life. We all have made decisions which we wish we had not made. Predictably, regrets increase as we grow older. Most seniors regret A. not spending enough quality time with family, B. not being/living their authentic and straightforward selves/lives, C. not preparing their children to be self-sufficient, D. trading happiness for a life of bearing grudges, E. not taking care of themselves mentally and physically, and F. not staying in touch with friends[2]. Pursue a largely regret-free old age by letting God guide you into the right decisions.


[1] Adapted from https://discover.hubpages.com/business/Leadership-Based-on-Biblical-Principles-7-Leadership-Lessons-from-King-Solomon

[2]Adapted from https://susie-moore.com/writer/5-biggest-regrets-of-the-dying/; https://www.seniority.in/blog/5-most-common-regrets-people-have-in-their-50s/; https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-23024/the-9-most-common-regrets-people-have-at-the-end-of-life.html; https://bestlifeonline.com/most-common-regrets/