Sometime while I was getting ready for work this morning, I thought of The Beatles’ song with the words “I get by with a little help from my friends”. I can easily find Scripture that supports that. While still in the wilderness the people of Israel asked Moses, “Is the Lord here with us or not?” (Ex 17:7) Then the warriors of Amalek attacked them (Ex 17:8).
“Moses commanded Joshua, ‘Choose some men to go out and fight the army of Amalek for us. Tomorrow, I will stand at the top of the hill, holding the staff of God in my hand.'” (Ex 17:9) Of this particular verse, Benson’s Commentary says: See how God qualifies His people for, and calls them to various services for the good of His church; Joshua fights, Moses prays, and both minister to Israel. This rod Moses held up, not so much to Israel, to animate them, as to God, by way of appeal to Him. Is not the battle the Lord’s? Is not He able to help, and engaged to help? Witness this rod! Moses was not only a standard-bearer, but an intercessor, pleading with God for success and victory.
So here’s where we find out that we all need help. “As long as Moses held up the staff in his hand, the Israelites had the advantage. But whenever he dropped his hand, the Amalekites gained the advantage. Moses’ arms soon became so tired he could no longer hold them up. So Aaron and Hur found a stone for him to sit on. Then they stood on each side of Moses, holding up his hands. So his hands held steady until sunset. As a result, Joshua overwhelmed the army of Amalek in battle.” (Ex 17:11-13) It took others standing with Moses, to be able to keep his hands up holding the staff of God.
I’m sure we’ve all read and depended upon “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” (Gal 6:2) And it is true that the Lord will send people to us to help keep our arms up as He sees fit. As I told you yesterday, I am suffering in depression now, almost constantly fighting back tears. With a couple of exceptions, my asking for help produced no responses. I realized this morning that many times that I reach out to others or cry out to God to send me someone to help me, help doesn’t seem to come. God allows suffering for several reasons. He uses times of suffering to break chains in our hearts. He allows suffering to purify us and bring us closer to Him. He allows suffering to strengthen us in discipline. He continues to remind me: “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matt 11:28)
As I’m studying Isaiah now, I am living out what the Lord tried to show the Israelites over and over and over again. We aren’t to form alliances or depend upon others; no, we are to take everything to the Lord in prayer. I am being shown now that the only one I can depend upon and trust is the Lord, just like He tried to show the Israelites. I’m to abide in the Lord on my own, and allow the washing of His Word over me give me the strength to move out of this depression. “Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord!” (Ps 27:14) I encourage anyone else who is suffering depression now to go to the Lord, and He will give us strength to learn the lesson He is trying to teach us.
Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere? We should never be discouraged, take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful Who will all our sorrows share? Jesus knows our every weakness. Take it to the Lord in prayer.