The king of Israel told Jehoshaphat, “As a matter of fact, there is another [prophet]. But I hate him. He never preaches anything good to me, only doom, doom, doom—Micaiah son of Imlah.” 2 Chronicles 18:7 (MSG)
History records Adolph Hitler’s slow descent into madness in the waning months of World War II. There were key moments in time when a wise military decision could have swung the tide of war to Germany’s favor. Hitler, however, would not hear wise military counsel and years of ruling by fear had left him with a gaggle of “yes men” unwilling to tell the tyrant that his decisions would ruin the empire he’d built for himself. Unwilling to hear the truth, Hitler made disastrous, tactical mistakes that sealed his fate.
Speaking truth to a person in power has always been a risky proposition. History is full of accounts of those who dared to speak words contrary to what a king, dictator, or powerful leader wished to hear only to be fired, stripped of power, imprisoned or killed.
Micaiah stands as a great example of those rare individuals who care more about God and Truth than personal safety and gain. I believe that each of us, at various points in the journey, are appointed, and have opportunity, to stand alone and speak the truth in love to those in authority over us. The question is whether we are willing to take the risk to do so.
God, give me the heart and boldness of Micaiah to stand alone and speak Truth in a world where people choose to listen only that which they wish to hear.Creative Commons photo courtesy of Flickr and hamedmasoumi