Archive for November 23rd, 2007

2 Chronicles 20

Jehoshaphat (J for short) wakes up to a real problem.  The armies from around his kingdom are poised to attack.  Things look bleak.  Guess what happens?  Shaken, Jehoshaphat prayed. He went to GOD for help…country of Judah united in seeking GOD’s help”.  J has been a pretty good man for the most part.  He screwed up a bit in associating with the wrong folks, but overall he was a man single minded in his following of God.  Now that things look tough, he runs to God.  That is the right response guys.  Our default needs to be to seek God, not try and deal with trouble on our own.  Too often God is the last resort, not the first reaction when issues fly our way.  Do you always run to God when you are “shaken” by something bigger than you can handle?  Or do you try to fix it first and then when you run out of your own ability run to God?  I confess the latter is my approach too many times.  God desires that we seek Him first.  He wants to act.  J calls the entire nation together – men, women and children – and gives them this message: “We don’t know what to do; we’re looking to you.  Everyone in Judah was there–little children, wives, sons–all present and attentive to GOD”.  How’s that for setting the tone for the upcoming battle.  He pretty much admits he can’t handle things and it is up to God.  He calls for a nationwide day of fasting and prayer and God responds with this truth: “This is God’s war, not yours….You won’t have to lift a hand in this battle; just stand firm… March out boldly”.  God takes responsibility here for the results.  He only asks J and the team to do one thing – to march out boldly.  There is some faith required here.  How can you march boldly when you are overpowered and know you are out manned in every way?  By trusting God to be true to His word.  Pay very close attention to what happens next: “As soon as they started shouting and praising, GOD set ambushes… all ended up killed…not a living soul among them”.  God showed up WHEN J and his men did what God required.  As soon as they obeyed – God was set free to act on their behalf.  Scripture is full of examples like this guys.  God shows up when people obey.  The Red Sea parts when they stick their toe in the water, Peter walks on water when he gets out of the boat and on and on it goes.  God is always true to His word.  Sometimes though it takes us “marching out boldly” to bring that power into action.  More often than not we release God’s power when we are obedient.  The secret to success – PRAY and OBEY and then let God handle the results.  J shows it to us clearly as do many other great men of faith in scripture.  Let’s make that our way of living life with our Father and the world we are part of.

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