The enemy is advancing. Everyone, including the king, is nervous. A service of prayer and fasting is called. And the king begins by praying, “Are you not God in heaven?” (verse 6)
I love this! The king is reminding God who God is! “You’re supposed to take care of us, remember?” Jehoshaphat is not sitting passively by, hoping that God does something nice for the people. This prayer demands that God be who God has promised to be.
And the king concludes his prayer with, “We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.” (verse 12)
I love this, too. The honesty in this prayer is refreshing. Admitting the need, admitting the fear, admitting the lack of direction, all sets the stage for what comes.
And what comes, this time, is a message to an unexpected recipient.
The message doesn’t come to the king. God doesn’t speak to the priests. A run-of-the-mill person in the congregation has an insight (verse 14ff) and shares it, and hope is rekindled.
In the struggles we face as church, let’s be as honest. Let’s admit we don’t know what to do. And let’s listen to each other. You never know who God will use to speak.
Loving God, we are afraid. Speak to us and help us hear. Amen. — RAP