“Asa became so angry with Hanani for saying this that he threw him into prison and put him in stocks. At that time Asa also began to oppress some of his people.” — 2 Chronicles 16:10
Something quite terrible but all too common happened to Asa in the latter part of his life. He lost his heart for God.
Perhaps he let the prestige of his job go to his head. The job of being king tended to develop an exaggerated estimate of self-importance.
Perhaps the opposite occurred. Compared to David and Solomon, Asa was a minor league ruler. Perhaps he could see his reign fading into history’s backwater and grew cynical about religious devotion.
Whatever the problem, Asa’s respectable and God-fearing career was hurt by an alliance with the pagan Ben-Hadad of Syria. It received a further blow when he imprisoned the prophet Hanani because the man of God dared to call him back to faith (2 Chronicles 16:10). His life was ultimately wrecked when a foot disease put him on his back and he refused to seek the Lord’s healing strength. He died away from God…out of fellowship.
We need to guard each other from Asa’s fate. We need to support and encourage senior members of the church. We need to remember with prayers, visits, music, and human touch those once-vital believers who now reside in nursing homes and convalescent centers, lest the aged forget in their ailment and loneliness the sure promises of the gospel.
Christians approaching their golden years need to nurture their faith and trust always in the goodness of God. As we approach these years we should be growing sweeter in the fellowship of the Lord and His precious Holy Spirit.
Growing old is a fact of life. Growing cold is a choice. We must encourage one another to stay sweet…to keep a warm heart towards God and towards others.