Getting right to the point with two questions. How do we withstand a “dog-eat-dog world, life constantly up for grabs, with no one, regardless of nation, country or city, knowing what the next day might bring” ? (a) And, who would think one could find such a contemporary answer in an ancient book called Chronicles?
Chapter 15, God has a timeless promise for Asa, King of Judah, which God honored every day of Asa’s life, and honors anyone who seeks Him.
“the Lord is with you when you are with Him. And if you seek Him, He will let you find Him; but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you. 3 For many days Israel was without the true God and without a teaching priest and without law. 4 But in their distress they turned to the Lord God of Israel, and they sought Him, and He let them find Him.” (b)
Now, my history with God is this. Every time the Lord has tugged at me, (c) and I have responded to follow, I have found Him. Jesus. Answers from Him. Direction. Him. Peace. Him. Jesus. Every time. Sometimes I am not the one putting out the effort to seek the Lord. In fact, sometimes, I don’t want Him to bother me. Until I am distressed or alarmed, I’m reduced to squeak out, “I need You.” The point here is not my unfaithfulness, but His impeccable commitment to faithfulness.
Of course the promise comes with warning – a warning, not a threat – to me, to us, to Asa. The Word truthfully communicates the rough way as well as the smooth. In Asa’s old age, he started having trouble with his feet, and consulted with physicians. Not a bad thing, but, it seems his trust in the physicians must have been to the extent that He completely shut God out. Possibly in his distress, Asa did not turn and seek God. The kind warning is this: IF we trade Him off for something we think is more adequate, more substantial, like Asa did, God will certainly continue to be the gentleman that He is and not force Himself on us, but leave us to our physicians, or whomever or whatever.
The promise to you, me or King Asa, is IF we make a move toward the Lord, He lets us find Him. He’s that accessible. IF in distress, we turn toward Him, He lets us find Him. He’s really quick to pull us to safety. That kind of response from Him! makes me love Him all the more. Whatever the next day brings “grows strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.” (d)
(a) II Chronicles 15:5 Message (b) :2 – 4 New American Standard (c) Song of Solomon 1:4 (d) turn your eyes upon Jesus