Have you ever found yourself in a tough spot where you see no way out of your problem? We tend to fret, which is a natural response. A few weeks ago I heard a podcast by Tony Evans that reminded me that not only are we to take our problems to the Lord and let Him carry our burden, we are also to praise Him for what He will do in our lives for His glory, even when we can’t see how we could possibly be delivered.
Jehoshaphat found out that the Moabites, Ammonites and others were coming against Judah (2 Chron 20:1-2). Instead of wringing his hands in fear and anxiety, Jehoshaphat sought the Lord and had all of Judah fast and pray (2 Chron. 20:3-5). Prayer is an invitation to heaven to address something happening on earth. There are times that God won’t intervene because we haven’t humbled ourselves before Him and asked Him with the right motives (James 4:2-3).
Jehoshaphat prayed with his voice (2 Chron. 20:6-12) first reminding God about who He is, then what He previously said. Then he brought up the problem to the Lord, ending: “For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon You” (v12).
God heard the prayers and responded with the steps they needed to walk in (showing their faith), but that “the battle is not yours, but God’s” (v15). He told them, “You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you” (v17).
They worshiped (v18) Him–which is our adoration of God for WHO He is, what He has done, and what we are trusting Him to do–and praised Him “with voices loud and high” (v19). Praise is not synonymous with worship; it is the visible verbal expression of our worship. And when the Lord feels our praise, He responds: “Those who sacrifice thank offerings honor me, and to the blameless I will show My salvation” (Ps. 50:23).
The people not only praised God in that moment, but also as they walked toward the battle the next morning (that was His), “Praise the Lord, For His mercy endures forever” (2 Chron 20:20-21). And when the Lord heard their praise, He confused the enemies (vv 22-23).
Whatever you are going through right now, I encourage you to seek the Lord in prayer and praise Him. Sing along with me: “How great is our God, sing with me. How great is our God, and all will see How great, how great is our God. Name above all names, Worthy of our praise. My heart will sing How great is our God!”
On a personal note, I’m sure you’ve noticed that I haven’t posted for a month. I’ve been encouraged by the Lord to take a sabbatical in order to spend more time with Him in prayer, study and praise. I’ve now been encouraged to share on the blog again. Thank you for your patience and your prayers!