Have you ever had a time in your life where you felt overwhelmed? You felt life had just knocked you down and was kicking you while you were down
Have you ever felt you were surrounded by enemies and had nowhere to go?
Have you ever felt all alone as if everyone had abandoned you?
Have ever found yourself in a position where you felt like you just couldn’t win no matter how hard you tried?
Have you ever just felt you needed God to show up for you and it felt as though he wasn’t?
We have all been there and can identify with this at some level and as we grow and mature we will most likely walk through something like this again because we have some very powerful enemies out there….a world that hates anything Jesus-like, the devil who simply hates everything and everyone because that is who he is, and our own flesh that simply wants to do everything it’s own way because that is the nature of our flesh….but we have a supernatural God, who overcomes all of this because you are the one He loves the most…
Once I was young, and now I am old.
Yet I have never seen the godly abandoned
or their children begging for bread.
God will never fail you turn his back on you or let you down. He may close doors only to open another one, He may remove people, jobs and situations from your life that are really toxic to you! As long as you determine to trust in Him and trust Him you will never be abandoned! God will always have your back! I believe that is part of what the Lord is saying in this verse..
Then shall your light break forth like the dawn,
and your healing shall spring up speedily;
your righteousness shall go before you;
the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard. (ESV)
I want us to look at a situation in the scripture that seemed impossible and how God lead his people to handle it!
2 Chronicles 20:1-4
After this, the armies of the Moabites, Ammonites, and some of the Meunites declared war on Jehoshaphat. Messengers came and told Jehoshaphat, “A vast army from Edom is marching against you from beyond the Dead Sea. They are already at Hazazon-tamar.” (This was another name for En-gedi.)
Jehoshaphat was terrified by this news and begged the LORD for guidance. He also ordered everyone in Judah to begin fasting. 4 So people from all the towns of Judah came to Jerusalem to seek the LORD’s help.
Jehoshaphat had blown it with the Lord, but his heart was right. He could have said, “Well I blew it so this is God punishing me, I’m getting what I deserve!” But because his heart was truly right let’s see how he handled it when literally all hell broke loose against him. All of these armies were only about 15 hours away. In the natural, everything was hopeless
Have you ever felt that way?
Have you ever felt I’ve just got to deal with what I deserve…
Have you ever felt like your back was against the wall and there wasn’t anything you could do? Maybe it was a financial struggle, a relationship one, perhaps raising your kids, dealing with an elderly parent, a job loss or impossible situation with you job or boss.
We have all been there Jehoshaphat did what most of us do first, he freaked out, worried, panicked but the heart of the person who loves the Lord came out…(he) begged the Lord for guidance.
It would seem natural for us as Christians to run to the Lord but we don’t always do it.
When your backs against the wall sometimes we
– feel we are just supposed to handle it
– feel unworthy of God’s help
– panic and forget God
– are just so overwhelmed and depressed we simply give up
None of that is what God wants, He truly loves you and as we build that love relationship we will always remember to run to him
When our backs are against the wall, God’s got our backs if we…
- Follow Jehoshaphat’s lead seek the Lord in the middle of our fear, frustration, struggle.
It is always good to breathe, then take time in prayer, study of the word, fasting, and the next thing he did
- Jehoshaphat asked others to join with him
Jehoshaphat asked the whole nation to join him in fasting. He needed the support of others. Sometimes it is our pride that blocks us from seeing the answers, the deliverance, that blessings we need because we forget to ask for others to join with us in prayer and to seek their advice
Jesus said in Matthew 18:19,20
“Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”
Where there is no counsel, the people fall; But in the multitude of counselors there is safety. OR as the NLT reads….Without wise leadership, a nation falls;
there is safety in having many advisers.
Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 12:15-27 how we are all part of the body of Christ, individuals with each having our own uniqueness that is needed to make the whole Body work.
When you are going through struggles, battles, it is most likely that someone else in the Body has already been there done that and can help you through it….we have marriages that are solid, people that have raised their children and their children are following the Lord completely. We have people who are successful in business, have been through what you are going through with family or health battles.
As we open up and ask others to stand with us the battle is already won!
Let’s look at the next few verses to see what we can do that makes it easy to see, how God has our back especially when our backs are up against the wall..
2 Chronicles 20:5-9
Jehoshaphat stood before the community of Judah and Jerusalem in front of the new courtyard at the Temple of the LORD. 6 He prayed, “O LORD, God of our ancestors, you alone are the God who is in heaven. You are ruler of all the kingdoms of the earth. You are powerful and mighty; no one can stand against you! 7 O our God, did you not drive out those who lived in this land when your people Israel arrived? And did you not give this land forever to the descendants of your friend Abraham? 8 Your people settled here and built this Temple to honor your name. 9 They said, ‘Whenever we are faced with any calamity such as war, plague, or famine, we can come to stand in your presence before this Temple where your name is honored. We can cry out to you to save us, and you will hear us and rescue us.’
- Acknowledge God for who He is!
Jehoshaphat remembered that God is a promise keeping, covenant keeping God. He remembered for himself, first that God has made certain promises that he has been faithful to fulfill for the nation and for himself
What promises has God kept for you? What has he done in your life that has made your life better? How is your life better than before Christ? How many times can you look back at your life and see the hand of God on you and you remember that even before you knew Him he was there for you…all the trouble that could have come on your life from your past failures and sins but didn’t because God was with you even then!
It is also OK to remind God of his promises, Jehoshaphat does that here as well…”they said”….basically whenever we face anything we can cry out to you and you will save us, hear us, and rescue us!
There have been many times in my life when I have cried out to the Lord even yelled to him a promise that he made in His word to me…it is what I needed to do for my own well-being and I believe it blessed the Lord that I was proclaiming faith in Him. I think we need to remember that we are His children
1 John 3:1
See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him.
As a Pastor, as a friend, as a citizen I stand in a way that my word is my bond…but as a Father, if I tell my children I will do something, I will do it regardless of the cost to me…If it is in my power to come through for them, I will….bible encourages us to do this one of the clearest verses is
“Don’t hurt your friend, don’t blame your neighbor; 4 despise the despicable. “Keep your word even when it costs you, (The Message)
If God challenges us to do this how much more will we see Him do this for us!
This is only Part 1….when you back is against the wall, you need to know that God does have your back!
- When you are in the battle, stop looking at the problem and start looking to God
- Ask other to stand with you, in prayer, encouragement, and to share the wisdom that you need
- Remember who God is, remind him that you are His child and remember He always keeps his word
If you begin to do these things you will overcome always…next week there are three more lessons from Jehoshaphat that will help