This story has always been particularly memorable to me. How Solomon handles this situation is brilliant. Both women are making a case. But when it comes down to it, Solomon knew how to trigger a “mother’s instinct” to protect. He was blessed with wisdom from on high.
Did you find it interesting that the story line twist includes the fact these women were prostitutes? What does the fact, that prostitutes were used as key players in this example of wisdom, say to you? To me, it says, clearly, that God’s justice is for all.
Solomon is playing both king and judge. We see God’s hand in his judicial finding. We can only assume that was divine intervention to want the best for everyone. Can we also assume that the first woman to speak is also the same woman who received the live child as Solomon’s ruling? No. What if both women had responded as she had? God would have had a different way to intervene.
I can’t even fathom waking up to a dead child in my arms. The story doesn’t even really dwell on how the mother with the dead child must be feeling. If she’s the one that was going to let the child be cut in half so that neither of them could have a child, then she was already mourning the loss of her “own” child, the death of someone else’s child wouldn’t matter as much. Maybe she didn’t want to be alone in her grief.
A grieving mother is not always thinking clearly. I have not lost a live child, but I have miscarried and carry with me the loss of my unborn child I never got a chance to hold. I’m clinging to the truth that came out in the “Heaven is For Real” book from the little boy who spent some time in heaven. If what he says is accurate, I’ll have a child waiting for me there some day! An extra bonus to living forever with Jesus!
Solomon must be feeling confident as well. He had just shown everyone an example of God’s justice. King Solomon wanted the people to know that he was going to honor God just as his father, King David, had before him. Mission accomplished. “When all Israel heard the king’s decision, the people were in awe of the king, for they saw the wisdom God had given him for rendering justice.”
Do you have any situations going on in your life right now that could use a little of Solomon’s wisdom from God? How about go straight to the source. Jesus made that possible for us. We can approach the throne of God and ask him for the wisdom we need.
Let’s pray …
Lord, I’m going to use the serenity prayer because it fits so beautifully here. “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference”. I do pray for wisdom in making the right choice with some big decisions on our plate. I trust you will show me the way. In Jesus’ name. Amen.