We Do Not Know What to Do

The responsibility of leading a kingdom must have weighed heavily upon his shoulders. The news was only bad, messenger after messenger: multiple kingdoms, all bent upon destroying him. With every breath, they would be a little closer. He had soldiers of course but what is even a strong and courageous army against multiple nations? It would have been easy to despair, give up, or flee. Lesser men have done so.

Jehoshaphat did not. Instead, he fasted and went into the temple of the Lord and prayed. The last line of his prayer is especially poignant: “We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you” (2 Chronicles 20:12).

Haven’t each of us been there? At the end of human resources, out of ideas, out of hope, out of courage. Helpless. Of course, the truth is that we have always been those things – we just didn’t have the eyes to see it!

Jehoshaphat was earnest. He wasn’t saying a prayer to God “in case.” Nor was he seeking God’s help after trying his own way first.

He humbly realized that his problems were well beyond his capabilities and that only the Lord could provide. He pledged himself (and his nation): to keep “our eyes are on you.” It seems simple to say but fixing our eyes upon the Lord can be terribly difficult. Satan will use all his power to thwart us. Our own stubborn hearts distract us!

How then do we keep our eyes on Him? Jehoshaphat gives us a good example.

  1. Worship the Lord
    Then Jehoshaphat bowed his head with his face to the ground, and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem fell down before the Lord, worshiping the Lord. ~ 2 Chronicles 20:18

  2. Encourage each other
    And they rose early in the morning and went out into the wilderness of Tekoa. And when they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Hear me, Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem! Believe in the Lord your God, and you will be established; believe his prophets, and you will succeed.” ~ 2 Chronicles 20:20

  3. Step out in faith
     And when he had taken counsel with the people, he appointed those who were to sing to the Lord and praise him in holy attire, as they went before the army, and say, “Give thanks to the Lord, for his steadfast love endures forever.” ~ 2 Chronicles 20:21
    Notice where the singers are – before the army! This is not a strategic battle plan, unless of course the Lord is leading!

  4. Sing of the Lord’s goodness
    And when he had taken counsel with the people, he appointed those who were to sing to the Lord and praise him in holy attire, as they went before the army, and say, “Give thanks to the Lord, for his steadfast love endures forever.” ~ 2 Chronicles 20:21
    Singing has always helped believers to direct our hearts to the Lord and His goodness!

And what happened after all?

When Judah came to the watchtower of the wilderness, they looked toward the horde, and behold, there were dead bodies lying on the ground; none had escaped…. So the realm of Jehoshaphat was quiet, for his God gave him rest all around. ~ 2 Chronicles 20:24,30

The Lord defeated all the enemies of Jehoshaphat. And it is the same Lord who fights for us! Wherever your path – through grief or trial, through work or stress, through anxiety or the unknown – go to the Lord first! Pour our your heart, acknowledge your own helplessness and find strength in Him and His direction. He can still be counted on.

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? ~ Romans 8:31

Photo by Cyrus Crossan on Unsplash

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