One of my least favorite things to do as a parent is mediate between my children about who gets what. I usually do breakfast at our house. At one point, this involved a lengthy debate about who gets what chair, so we went to seat assignments that change each week. After the seating issue, we have to deal with what bowl to use. Or what cup. Or who gets which plate. And of course, both kids almost always want the same thing. Serving breakfast each morning makes me really appreciate Solomon’s predicament in our reading today.
Solomon was known as the wisest person alive. He had previously asked God for wisdom to govern God’s people. One day, two women came to him to settle a dispute:
But the other woman said, “No, the living child is mine, and the dead child is yours.” The first said, “No, the dead child is yours, and the living child is mine.” Thus they spoke before the king. 1 Kings 3:22
These two women were arguing over whose son had died. Poor Solomon had to make a decision about whose child it was. Solomon’s solution was genius: cut the baby in two and give half to each. Of course, the real mother begged the king to let the other woman have the child, rather than see her son killed. Solomon immediately knew that this was her child and gave him to her.
This is just one example of Solomon’s wisdom in action. As I read this story again this week, I noticed something I hadn’t seen before however:
And all Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered, and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him to do justice. 1 Kings 3:28
The people “perceived that the wisdom of God was in him to do justice.” God blessed Solomon with wisdom to do justice. He has gifted you in special ways as well. Perhaps He is calling you today to use your gifts to do justice as well.