Would they know we were believers by our words and our actions?
And at the moment they began to sing and to praise, the Lord caused the armies of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir to begin fighting among themselves, and they destroyed each other! 2 Chronicles 20:22
When it comes to taking God at His word, there’s believing, and then there’s believing… the later moves beyond the casual and reveals itself in action!
The context for this reading has King Jehoshaphat setting the tone for acting in faith in God’s promise of victory by calling for a parade of thanksgiving to God before their upcoming battle. Given how he led his people in praising God between the promise and the fulfillment, it’s apparent that they truly took the Lord at His word. The King’s people got it right… they started the victory dance before the fight had even started… a true sign of faith!
God promised He’d be with the King’s people in the battle, as He promises us today. Yet, we often worry anyway until we see that He really does keep His word. If our outlook doesn’t change, do we really trust God?
One way to boost our faith is to imagine God taking immediate action in response to our prayers. If you’ve never wondered what goes on in God’s throne room when prayers arrive there, dwelling on it can be a great faith booster. God moves in faithful love at the moment we share our concerns with Him. And while His answer may be delayed, it is not because of inaction on His part… He hears each word and hears it immediately… but God’s timing is not our timing… He is under no obligation to reveal when or why He does what He does!
Looking closely at verse 24, Jehoshaphat and his people couldn’t see with physical eyes that their enemies were fighting among themselves until those three armies had destroyed each other. But it didn’t matter as their faith had already seen the victory they believed God would hand them.
When we believe our heavenly Father acts at the very moment we call upon Him, our eyes of faith have the ability to ‘see’ His promises come to fruition before they actually do. Based on our countenance and actions, will those around us know that we are Christians who truly believe who He is?
But do these actions mean that I’m supposed to actually do something? Or does my faith demand that I simply wait on Christ or take matters into my own hands? As someone who is very proactive, I struggle with such questions wondering if me moving would usurp God’s authority.
I believe that God is less concerned about being perfect in our faith and more about our commitment to growing in faith so we can hear His voice more clearly and be obedient to His calling. Only then can we begin to experience the kind of blessings that God intends for us to experience. King Jehoshaphat’s people seemed to possess something very special… true faith! Do we have that kind of faith? The faith that truly believes that God will do all He promises to do in good times and in bad? I know I struggle with this quite a bit… during the bad times, feeling like God has abandoned me… wondering why He would leave me to fight the battle on my own. I still have more work to do!
Thank you, Lord, for keeping Your promises, regardless of how I treat You, whether with my words or my actions. Thank you for loving me unconditionally. Lord, we depend on You and we believe You when You say You hear and answer every prayer! Amen…
Greg Stefanelli (gstefanelli)