“O our God, won’t you stop them? We are powerless against this mighty army that is about to attack us. We do not know what to do, but we are looking to you for help.” —2 Chronicles 20:12.
COVID-19 is one of the biggest health challenges we as a nation have faced in generations. COVID-19 is more contagious, more deadly (particularly for older people), and it has a greater potential to overwhelm our health care system than anything we have dealt with for decades. We are corporately trying to ameliorate this crisis. And individually we are trying to do our part. The question is what do we do now?
That is exactly what Jehoshaphat, king of Israel, told God centuries ago. The combined armies of Moab and Amman came against Israel in battle. The king, Jehoshaphat, was afraid and who can blame him. Fear is usually the first emotion we feel when we are surrounded by difficulty and danger. But in the midst of this imminent danger, the king did something we all should do in times of crisis.
Jehoshaphat began to earnestly seek the Lord and proclaimed a fast throughout all the land. He gathered the people together and began to do some pretty earnest praying. Jehoshaphat begged the Lord for guidance. He reminded God of some promises that had first been made to his forefathers, and then cried out, “… We do not know what to do, but we are looking to you for help.”
Sound familiar. How many times have we said, ”God I don’t know what to do, but I’m asking You to show me what to do.” Too often we pray to God but look to someone else to answer our petition. Praying like this suggests that we don’t fully trust God to answer our prayer. Scripture tells us that God will meet you in the hour of crisis if you will turn to Him with all your heart.
God spoke in the time of crisis and His message is the same today to those who will rely on Him. He said, “…Do not be afraid! Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.” (2 Chronicles 20:15) God went on to say in verses 16-17: “Tomorrow, march out against them. You will find them coming up through the ascent of Ziz at the end of the valley that opens into the wilderness of Jeruel. But you will not even need to fight. Take your positions; then stand still and watch the Lord’s victory. He is with you, O people of Judah and Jerusalem.”
Over and over again, the Scriptures describe the faithful not as those who never saw trouble, but as those who cried out to God in their crises. The men and women we read about in scripture faced times of trouble and days of distress. God heard their cries for help. He was not deaf then — nor is he today — to the voices of his people in crisis.
- Do we focus too much on the problem and not on the one who can solve the problem?
- How do we focus more on the problem solver this week? Our God is at His best in our crises.