… Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s. … You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you. 2 Chronicles 20:15 & 17 NIV
Have you ever felt like you’re up against a “vast army?” Maybe it’s a struggle at work, with your family or even a health crisis. When we’re facing our personal “vast army” sometimes we itch to do something – anything. Other times, we might want to hide out and pretend the struggle doesn’t exist.
In 2 Chronicles 20, King Jehoshaphat discovers that not one, but THREE armies are coming after his kingdom. We’re told he’s “alarmed,” but then he goes straight to the Lord – and calls all his people to seek the Lord’s guidance through prayer and fasting.
One of the things I love about this story is that he doesn’t just start by pouring out his lists of requests to the Lord. Instead, he starts by praising the only One who could help. In verse 6 he prays, “You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. Power and might are in your hand, and no one can withstand you.” Then in verse 12 he prays, “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 on you.”
Isn’t that a beautiful prayer for all of us, no matter what we’re facing? Just as in Psalm 23, Jehoshaphat and his people trusted that God was going to take care of them in the presence of their enemies. Instead of tiptoeing quietly up to the enemy, Jehoshaphat and his soldiers went out singing praises to the Lord.
And what did those praising warriors find? A lot of dead bodies! Those three armies destroyed each other, leaving Jehoshaphat’s men to collect all the clothing, equipment and articles of value. God truly provided for them in the presence of their – newly deceased – enemies. Do we trust God to do this in our lives?
Lord, I praise You for being the ultimate Problem Solver. Forgive me when I go to fear instead of faith. You know my current situation. Help me keep my eyes on you and be ready to go out and face the enemy in Your strength and in Your perfect timing, because I know you will be with me. Amen.