Irvin Wasswa- Tylertown Campus Pastor LHBC
2 Chronicles 20:1-12
20 After this the Moabites and Ammonites, and with them some of the Meunites, came against Jehoshaphat for battle. 2 Some men came and told Jehoshaphat, “A great multitude is coming against you from Edom,from beyond the sea; and, behold, they are in Hazazon-tamar” (that is, Engedi). 3 Then Jehoshaphat was afraid and set his face to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. 4 And Judah assembled to seek help from the Lord; from all the cities of Judah they came to seek the Lord.
5 And Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the Lord, before the new court, 6 and said, “O Lord, God of our fathers, are you not God in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. In your hand are power and might, so that none is able to withstand you. 7 Did you not, our God, drive out the inhabitants of this land before your people Israel, and give it forever to the descendants of Abraham your friend? 8 And they have lived in it and have built for you in it a sanctuary for your name, saying, 9 ‘If disaster comes upon us, the sword, judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we will stand before this house and before you—for your name is in this house—and cry out to you in our affliction, and you will hear and save.’ 10 And now behold, the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir, whom you would not let Israel invade when they came from the land of Egypt, and whom they avoided and did not destroy— 11 behold, they reward us by coming to drive us out of your possession, which you have given us to inherit. 12 O our God, will you not execute judgment on them? For we are powerless against this great horde that is coming against us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.”
Have you ever found yourself in a place of desperation? Have you been in a season of life like that where it seems as though the walls of trouble are closing in and there seems to be no hope? In 2 Chronicles 20 we see God’s people in a situation like that. They found themselves surrounded by enemy nations who were seeking to eradicate them. Things looked bleak and hopeless for them. However in the midst of the situation we see the King of Judah named Jehosaphat (We will call him King J for short) respond in an amazing manner. See, King J was known as one of the few kings who walked with the Lord during this time period and it showed in how he lived his life. In chapter 20 we see how he responded when life threw him a “curveball.” The greatest test of how we are walking with the Lord is by how we choose to respond/react when trouble comes. The way King J responded is the way in which as believers we ought to choose to respond when trouble comes: By seeking the face of God in Prayer.
When the news came that he and his people were in deep trouble, he did not run to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Listen; he did not run to his neighbor. The first place he went was to the Lord in prayer. King J sought the face of God in his distress and encouraged all the people to do the same. Even though he was afraid, he knew the One who was able to intervene and so he ran to Him. Is seeking the face of God the first thing we do when crisis comes? You and I are not going to find wisdom, peace and strength we need by going to social media or by suppressing the problem. We have to choose to be like King J and run to the Lord.
In verses 5-12 we see the actual prayer in which he led the people in praying. He was honest and forthright with the Lord. His prayer wasn’t formulaic or scripted. You can see that it was from the heart. The Lord knows our heart by the way so we should just be real, honest and forthright before Him. The prayer wrapped up in vs 12 with King J’s statement “For we are powerless against this great horde that is coming against us. We do not know what to do but our eyes are on You.” King J here surrenders his pride by saying this statement. For us, in these desperate and troubling moments the Lord wants us to relinquish our pride, and say “God, I need You. I do not know what to do but I trust in You.” It is in those moments when we surrender in prayer that we see the Lord show up and show out!
The lesson we can take away from King J here is that when trouble comes in our life, the first place we run to is the Lord in prayer. Aren’t you glad that the God of the universe cares about you and the struggle you are in? May we take our cares and concerns to Him. As we continue to grow in your relationship with Him, may we see the importance of being steadfast in prayer. When we seek Him in prayer, we get His peace that surpasses all understanding in the midst of the trouble (Philippians 4:6-7), we receive the comfort at only comes from Him in light of the trouble (2 Corinthians 1:4); we are able to continue to choose joy in light of the suffering because we are reminded who is in control (1 Peter 1:6-9). Most importantly though when you choose to pray, you get the Lord! Are you in a mess today? Are you in a trial or in trouble? Choose to take a page out of King J’s life and choose to seek the face of the Lord first and foremost in your life!
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Dear Heavenly Father Lord, thank you for caring about me. Thank you for being near to your children when we are broken, hurting, and suffering. I pray today that you meet me where I am today. I give you my pain, my hurt, and my trouble, knowing that You are God and you are good and that I can trust you. My eyes are on You today, trusting that You will work and move in my life. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
All things are possible for one who believes.