2 Kings 22 vs 1 - 2
Josiah was eight years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem thirty-one years. His mother’s name was Jedidah daughter of Adaiah; she was from Bozkath. He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and followed completely the ways of his father David, not turning aside to the right or to the left.
However low the flame of witness seems to burn God keeps it alive. There is always a remnant of faithful people who are the hope for the future and that was very much the case in the history of Israel. Josiah didn’t have a great heritage in faith though he had all the right connections as politically. His grandfather Manasseh was one of the most vile and evil of the kings of Judah. His father Amon wasn’t much better. He came to the throne aged twenty two but was assassinated two years later where upon at the age of eight Josiah became king. There was nothing obvious in his background that could have led naturally to the assessment of his reign in verse 2 above except that God had chosen him and had put his hand on this child for a special task as he would come into adulthood.
I wonder though who God put around him as advisers and guardians for God always has his people in unexpected places in the most unpromising times as we find over and over again in the bible. Very often these people are anonymous, insignificant in a world of power and wealth, we don’t know their names or the role they performed but their influence under God is profound and I suspect that this was so for Josiah.
God’s hand you see is not only on the macro things human history but also in the micro, he’s at work behind the scenes to achieve his purposes. We never know what influence our witness might have on individuals who later prove to be used greatly by God and that is true for the troubled grandparent, beleaguered and discouraged youth leader or bible class teacher as it is for the obscure pastor labouring without seeing success in terms that the world and even the church counts success. God is not interested in success of that kind but in the love and faithfulness of his people, people willing to say, “Here am I, send me.”