In those days Hezekiah was sick and near death. And Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz, went to him and said to him, “Thus says the LORD: ‘set your house in order, for you shall die and not live’”.
Then Hezekiah turned his face toward the wall and prayed to the LORD, and said, “Remember now, O LORD , I pray, how I have walked before You in truth and with a loyal heart, and have done what is good in Your sight”. And Hezekiah wept bitterly.
And the word of the LORD came to Isaiah, saying,
“Go and tell Hezekiah, ‘Thus says the LORD, the God of David your father. ‘I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; surely I will add to your days fifteen years’”. Isaiah 38: 1-5;
Other Bible references: 2Chronicle Chapters 29, 30, 31, 32 and 33
When Hezekiah was Thirty-Nine  years old, an indication came from God that it was time for him to die. According to the word sent through Prophet Isaiah, the journey of Hezekiah on earth needed to come to a close. This indication came not because God hated Hezekiah or just wanted to cut his life short. If he has not fulfilled the purpose for which he was created, may be God would not have indicated that it was time for him to die at such a prime age. However, Hezekiah was not willing to end it at age thirty-nine. He wanted to live longer. He wanted to continue to stay alive so much that he wrestled in rigorous prayers for extension of his life span. In response to his earnest request, God added additional fifteen years to his life span.
Up to age thirty-nine , Hezekiah had lived a very purposeful life. He did a lot of great exploits and good works in Judah as a king. For instance, it was him that restored true worship in Judah. He repaired the doors of the temple of the Lord that had been destroyed and appointed priests and Levites to attend to daily worship service. He utterly destroyed idol worship from Judah and brought people close to God.
Although Hezekiah succeeded in getting his life span extended by fifteen years, but what did he achieve with the additional years? What special thing did he accomplish? Going through the account of his life in those additional years, it would be discovered that the years were sorrowful, miserable and empty.
Firstly, it was within those years [at age forty-two] he gave birth to Manasseh, that evil son who led the whole house of Judah and Israel into idolatry and vain worship. Manasseh did not only reject the Almighty God, he brought in idols that his father destroyed from all over the surrounding countries and filled Judah with evil. He succeeded in turning the whole people against the true God.
Secondly, it was in those additional years that pride took over the life of Hezekiah. He didn’t concentrate anymore on pleasing the Lord, but building empires that would not endure.
In addition, it was in those years he entered into covenant with God’s enemies, which was one of the reasons Israel and Judah were sent into captivity.
Finally, it was in those years he backslided from following the Lord with all his heart. What a pitiable way to end for Hezekiah who once lived a purposeful life pleasing the Lord.
Those additional years became source of unending sorrows for Hezekiah and generations after him. The extension was not spent on anything meaningful. Why? Hezekiah made mess of his latter life and future because he had no specific purpose or vision for the additional years. The extension of life he got rather than being a blessing, turned out to be a great curse. What a pity!
Would it not have been better for Hezekiah to have died at age 39 than having his life extended by fifteen years of purposeless living? Why did he ask for extension of life? What did he want to achieve with the additional years? May be if he had established all of these before requesting for extension of his life span, his latter end would not have been miserable. The truth is that he had no justification for the additional years God added to his life span. The reason the additional years God granted to Hezekiah were wasted was that he had no definite purpose he wanted to accomplish with them. He just wanted to stay alive without a definite purpose to be achieved.Of course, if he did not spend those years to pursue a definite vision or purpose that would glorify God, he had to spend them on some other meaningless things. There can be no vaccum.
Life is meant to be a blessing indeed, but when there is no specific vision or purpose you are committed to and pursue, life rather than being a blessing may turn out to be a curse. It is purpose that gives meaning to life. Life is beautiful only when it is invested in pursuing our God-given purpose and visions. If you are visionless, you have no justification for being alive!
What have you achieved with the years you had already spent? You wish to live long right? Why do you wish to stay alive? Do you have a clear–cut vision and purpose you want to pursue with your life? If you do, will that vision glorify and bring honour to God? Unless you have a definite purpose or vision you want to pursue with your life, you do not have legitimate reason to stay alive! This sounds too harsh right? But that is the truth! It is hi time we refocused our lives on our God-given purpose.
The story of anyone who has no definite vision in life might be like the latter years of Hezekiah which were spent on frivolities and meaningless things. The purpose of life is not to pursue riches, wealth, fame, pleasures, selfish ambitions and things that have no relevance in eternity. The life we live belongs to God and we would be required to give a detailed account of how we spent or invested it.
Dearly beloved, what are you living for? Have you discovered the purpose of your existence? While you may not be able to redress the errors and failures of the past years, what do you want to achieve with today and the coming years? The only way you can justify your existence is to life a purposeful life. You must pursue a definite God-given vision with your life.
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