InFLUence | Emotion vs Wisdom
“Rehoboam rejected the advice of the elders and…asked the opinion of the young men…” 1 Kings 12:8
Despite his quirky name, Rehoboam had been born with a silver spoon in his mouth. Son of King Solomon and heir to the throne, he had enjoyed a life of luxury with his buddies. When time came to make him king, he assumed his young party friends would make good advisors too. What did the gray-hairs know? That poor decision divided Israel and set them up for centuries of internal wars. Because the new king was not careful about who influenced him, he brought down a kingdom.
We don’t always know how our influence is going to affect others. Rehoboam’s buddies probably never realized how their arrogant, unwise advice would affect their homeland. Urging the new king to assert his power may have been just another day in leisure-land for the spoiled rich boys, but they ended up destroying their very foundations. “Sure, tell your boss what you think of him!” our friends urge. “Dump that husband of yours. He deserves it!” “Quit your job, that’ll show them!” Friends may never realize the power of their influence, nor do we. When we have earned the trust and respect of another, we owe it to them to offer wise counsel, even counsel they may not want to hear. Rehoboam’s friends held the future of Israel in their beer mugs and didn’t even know it. And we, too, may never know the result of our words, so we must use our influence wisely.
Are you always careful to give wise and biblical advice when someone asks for your input?
Father, I’ve been guilt of spouting off from emotion rather than wisdom when someone has asked my opinion. Please forgive me and help me take my influence more seriously. Use me to influence for good and not harm. In Jesus’ name, Amen.