O Lord, may my victories be like those of Jehoshaphat’s! When I am confronted with a difficulty, let me learn from Jehoshaphat. His first response upon hearing of the dilemma? “Alarmed, Jehoshaphat resolved to inquire of the Lord, and he proclaimed a fast…” Then, when the people came together, he prayed!
This is what I should do! Rather than respond with anxiousness, confusion, anger, frustration, or discouragement.
His words began with a statement of who You are and what You can do. How encouraging, to be reminded that You, my God, are the most powerful force in all creation!
“O Lord, God of our fathers, are You not the God who is in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. Power and might are in Your hand, and no one can withstand You. We stand in Your presence… and cry out to You in our distress, and You will hear us and save us… For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon You!”
What a claim! I acknowledge my insufficiency, but affirm my faith in trusting You. If I look at You instead of whatever problem, my focus stays positive. It confirms that You are bigger than the problem.
“This is what the Lord says to you: Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours but God’s. Tomorrow, march down against them…you will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out and face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.”
Then they “bowed with their face to the ground and fell down in worship before the Lord. Some stood up and praised the Lord, the God of Israel, with a very loud voice.”
Father, You answered them with a challenge to be courageous, and a promise to fight their battle. I definitely feel more courageous when I am singing praise music, or praying out loud. When I connect with You in prayer, I am re-energized and empowered to go on. From my journals, it is also reassuring to read about the times You have delivered me in the past. Recalling Your faithfulness always has an inspiring and calming effect.
And the result? Jehoshaphat and his men didn’t have to fight. As they sang and praised You, You fought the battle! Then they spent three days carrying off the plunder from the victory You gave them!
They returned to Jerusalem rejoicing and praising You in the Temple.
O Father, I forget when my problems seem so big, that I have a Father who is bigger. Who can give me a victory. Who can provide me with abundant rewards. Remind me to come to You first. To seek You, to fast, to pray, and to trust. Thank You. Amen