Floods. Fires. Disease. Shame. Traumas!
Are you trying to swim against a harsh current and feel too weak to fight it’s exhausting and relentless pressure?
Does it seem like an enemy has you surrounded? Do you feel like a helpless pawn against the foe?
My friends! Fear not, for the LORD is the Helper of the helpless, and GREAT things happen to us when we realize our powerless condition!
A great key to victory when overwhelmed is found at the end of Jehoshaphat’s prayer:
“We have no power to face this vast army that is coming against us,” 2 Chronicles 20:2.
Have you ever felt like that?
Of course! But it’s a great place to be! (Did I really say it’s a great place to be?)
- That Grief.
- That Sorrow.
- That Trauma.
It’s when the darkness of the soul is brought fully into the Light Of Full interdependence upon God and our willingness to yield to the work He must do to free us from self destructive behaviors and the way they poison our peace and dwarf our spiritual, relational, emotional and healthy physical stewardship in life.
If you are there right now, don’t despair. God delights to “step in” on behalf of powerless people.
The whole story of Jehoshaphat puts pictures to our very own situation in this crazy and stressful world.
We are always outnumbered, always outflanked, surrounded by non-stop duties, cares, hindrances, harassments, problems, accusations, requirements to perform “just so” or get axed, and the stream of entanglements of this life.
I love this quote:
“Blessed is the desperation that catches God’s hand.
Firm is the trust that leaps from despair.”
It’s so easy to have false security!
We say things like,
- “I can take it.”
- “Don’t worry.”
- “I can handle it.”
- “I’ve got it under control.”
- “I need no help.”
- “I will just hide it, stuff it inside, buck up and perform.”
- “I’m okay.”
But we are always broken sooner or later. In the end, even the most powerful realize they have no power at all.
The strongest of men or women can be utterly broken on the jagged rocks of reality!
Just when we think we’ve got it all together, in that painful moment, life begins to fall apart.
And it becomes an unfamiliar and dim existence. We feel off balance. Numbed. It’s shocking. The familiar landscape we’ve so easily navigated in the past, changes forever.
But… as a believer… there is another ONE who is navigating and calling out to you in that dark tempest of the Storms and Agony.
If we aren’t careful then we get all mixed up when we think about prayer. We look at the externals — the way to “speak”, the words, the length, whether we are standing or sitting, whether our eyes are open or shut, whether we phrase things in exactly the right way.
But God looks at the heart. He looks inside at the faith, the sincerity, the raw honesty.
He’s really not that interested in the outside! Of course wise external health and care is a good thing.
However…… when He listens to prayer, He looks at your heart.
Jehoshaphat’s heart was in the right place. His wasn’t a very long prayer but it saved an entire nation. It wasn’t very complicated or packed with poetic and flowery phrases, but it got the job done.
He says: “O LORD, the God of our fathers, are You not God in the heavens? And are You not ruler over all the kingdoms of the nations? Power and might are in Your hand so that no one can stand against You.
Did You not, O our God, drive out the inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel and give it to the descendants of Abraham Your friend forever?
They have lived in it, and have built You a sanctuary there for Your name, saying, ‘ Should evil come upon us, the sword, or judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we will stand before this house and before You (for Your name is in this house) and cry to You in our distress, and You will hear and deliver us.” 2 Chronicles 20:6-12.
Now that’s just right from the heart and out of the mouth of a desperate and humble man!
Let’s pray the same kind of prayers that Jehoshaphat prayed with such fervor!
Let’s pray for our homes, families, and the nations that we live in!
We will all have extremely dark nights where our souls are in anguish. It is there where the refining and intense maturing takes place.
We learn to not yield to feelings or our moods. We lean in, totally bent towards that wise peace that calls out through the fog, “This may be hard! This may be new to you! But this is the way! Walk it out! Walk in it.”
Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” (Isaiah 30:21).
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind,” 2 Timothy 1:7.
Let’s Pray this Together:
LORD, I’m having some trouble managing this stressful time in my life.
The stress is just getting to be too much for me, and I need your strength to get me through.
I know that you are a pillar for me to lean on in tough times, and I pray that you will continue to provide me with ways to make my life less burdensome and weary.
LORD, I pray that you would grasp my hand in your hand and walk me through the dark times.
I ask that you reduce the burdens in my life or show me the path to get things done or rid myself of the things weighing me down.
Thank you, LORD, for all you do in my life and how you will provide for me, instruct me, mature me, even in this stressful and difficult time.
In Jesus name,
In His Shadow,
~ Mary Lindow ©
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Mary Lindow has a passion for encouraging others – all generations, careers or vocations to live expressing excellence through personal integrity, healthy accountability, and wise management of talents and skills. She’s a sought after keynote, inspirational, humorous speaker and teacher across the USA and internationally in Ministers & Spiritual leaders Conferences, and training seminars for various organizations.