The past couple of days have been plagued with constant news of hysteria. Events that took months and months of planning have eventually come to a sudden halt. The nations have been turned upside down because of the unknown. A lot of conspiracy theories, fake news, prophecies, and the likes have erupted because of what is happening. People have placed blame on people, the government and some, even on God. Humans are wondering—when is this all going to end?
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Well, since the beginning of time, humanity has suffered bouts of destruction and threats. Something has been threatening our existence since we were created. Disease, epidemics, our fellow humans, accidents and the rest; this is not new, this is not news. Now we have an advantage, Jesus (thank God).
In the book of John 16:33, Jesus is found speaking some words of encouragement to his disciples. Before verse 33, He had made predictions about things that would occur, and as any regular human being, they became fearful. But then He said to them—“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world, you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (Phew! Thank God).
Fix your focus
Jesus already said that in the world we would have trouble, but in Him, we would have peace. I see it this way—if you constantly feed yourself with all the news coming from the media every second, you will become fearful. There is no faith in whatever they are speaking, and possibly little truth, embellished with human opinions.
God’s truth is totally on a different plain. Truth is the way God sees things, actually, truth is God (John 14:6). That is why Jesus said that if we are in Him, then we would have peace amid chaos or turmoil. It doesn’t make us delusional, it just shows that we trust that God’s word is true, and He has indeed overcome the world.
God is not in heaven in mass hysteria. God is not asking Jesus or the Holy Spirit for advice on how to handle whatever is going on. God knew before this year started that this will happen; although it took us by surprise, it is not a surprise to Him.
What can we do in other not to lose our minds?
The answer is simple, pray, then praise. Now let me draw your attention to a story in the bible found in 2 Chronicles 20.
Around this time period, Jehoshaphat was king over Judah. He had a heart for God, and he ruled the people from that standpoint. Now, Judah was threatened by a group of people. In fact, someone came and informed the king that a vast multitude was coming against them, and he told the king the location the enemy was coming from. Guess what this king did? He sought the Lord. He also proclaimed a fast all around Judah, and everyone came together to seek the face of the Lord. It is so important to have a ruler who is in tune with God.
With King Jehoshaphat leading the prayer, he said—“O Lord God of our fathers, are You not God in heaven and do You not rule over all the kingdoms of the nations and in Your hand is there not power and might, so that no one is able to withstand You? Are You not our God who drove out the inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel and gave it to the descendants of Abraham Your friend forever?
And they dwell in it and have built You a sanctuary in it for Your name, saying—‘if disaster comes upon us—sword, judgments, pestilence or famine–we will stand before this temple and in Your presence (for Your name is in this temple) and cry out to you in our affliction, and You will hear and save.’
Verse 12 goes on to say—“O our God, will You not judge them? For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon you. Now all Judah, with their little ones, their wives, and their children, stood before the Lord.”
The land of Judah was blessed enough to have a king who knew who God was. I mean their journey might have not been perfect as we know that the Israelites liked to misbehave from time to time, but Jehoshaphat knew just what to do, in the middle of turmoil. Rather than running helter-skelter, he ran in one direction, he ran to God. He did not even do that alone, he rallied for the entire nation to join him as he sought wisdom and direction from God.
I loved what they said here—For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon you. They stated their human limitations, and also their total dependence on God. That is all God is requiring us all to do, which is to depend on Him for everything because He is the only one who can rescue us.
Let me take a little diversion for a second. In 2 Corinthians 1-10, years and years after the experience with King Jehoshaphat, Paul was sharing with his fellow believers what he and some other apostles had faced.
He said—“We think you ought to know dear brothers and sisters, about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia. We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. And He did rescue us from mortal danger, and He will rescue us again. We have placed our confidence in Him, and He will continue to rescue us.”
They also stated their human limitations and their total dependence on God. When we are faced with a crisis, it shows us two things—we are only humans; we don’t have all the answers. And we need someone bigger than ourselves, to rescue us. This is always God.
Back to our story…
After Jehoshaphat and all of Judah cried out to God that is by revealing their mortality and total dependence on God the Holy Spirit fell on one of the priests and he began to prophesy the words of the living God.
He said—“listen all you of Judah, and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you King Jehoshaphat! Thus says the Lord to you: ‘Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.’ Verse 17 which is a popular verse continues his message—‘You will not need to fight in this battle, position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem! Do not fear or be dismayed, tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you.’
Another point to note here is that when situations like these arise, a lot of false prophets arise with them. It is very crucial that you are careful who you listen to. Not everyone hears from God.
After they got this message from God, they all worshipped God. Next thing Jehoshaphat deployed his armies, but first he set people who would sing praises to God in front of the soldiers and they all sang these words—“Praise the Lord, for His mercies endures forever.” As they sang, the bible recalls that the Lord set up ambushes against the enemy's camp, and they fought themselves instead.
So much so that when the armies of Judah got to the scene, they met dead bodies. God fulfilled His word that day, they did not need to fight, and the battle was never theirs, to begin with. God is big enough to rescue us from any danger, if only we recognize our human limitations, and depend totally on Him.
All they needed to do was pray to God for wisdom and direction: if they rushed ahead of themselves, they would have gotten the battle plan wrong. After they prayed, Jehoshaphat thought it wise for them to praise God. And the words they said were very prophetic. They praised God because He was merciful. We don’t know why the enemy targeted them, but more importantly in the midst of all of that, they recognized that they were in need of God’s mercy, and we are too.
We have a thing or two or even multiple to learn from them. Their strategy, I believe, can work now, and in any other difficult circumstances we may face. As we all pray for this crisis to end, let us also praise God for His mercies that endures even to a thousand generations.
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About The Author: Evi Idoghor is a Christian, writer, and content creator on Letstalknationblog.com. She is a chemical engineering graduate from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Consumed by her love for writing and desire to effect change, she launched her online platform––Let’s Talk Nation––to tap into her creativity and start meaningful conversations that would make a difference around the world.
Most of her writing has been influenced by her time spent in America, where she lived for about 11 years. Also, she lived in Nigeria and South Korea and currently loves traveling the world while learning about other fascinating cultures. You can find her on all social media platforms with @eviidoghor.