Several things struck me this year in reading 2 Chronicles 20 and how Jehoshaphat responded to the news that a ‘vast army’ was coming to attack them. Scripture says that he was ‘alarmed,’ How would you feel if you knew a massive army was coming to destroy your city?
My first response would definitely be like Jehoshaphat’s! But look what he did. He not only sought God’s help, but proclaimed a fast for the whole city. They didn’t have radios or TV’s then. News spread fast, probably through the synagogues and word of mouth. It says that people came to seek help from the Lord from ‘every town’ in Judah. Whole families came.
They knew they were powerless with such a massive attack coming. They humbled their hearts and God ended up fighting the battle for them. (The armies destroyed each other and the Israelites never even fought. The singers went out at the head of the army, singing praises.)
I was in a women’s Bible Study called Community Bible Study (CBS) when the first Gulf War broke out. It was a group of around 80 woman from 30 churches. It was not a ‘quiet’ group. Even in the parking lot the ladies, myself included, loved to talk to each other.
It was usually hard for our teacher to get us quiet to even start the class. When the war broke out, our Bible Teacher told us we were going to start with 20 minutes of quiet prayer to seek God’s help for our soldiers.
I honestly thought the idea was great, but no way could these women be quiet for 20 minutes. How could they ever make that work? Well, the next week I was amazed that no one spoke and 100% of the ladies humbled their hearts.
We don’t usually respond with sackcloth and ashes like they did in the Old Testament. But God is looking inside our hearts. He still responds to a broken and contrite spirit. Those are the people he lifts up!