Our Caring and Able Father
2 Chronicles 20:1-4
Everyone faces challenges in life. Whether our struggles are financial, vocational, relational, or physical, we can be certain that nobody is exempt. Fortunately, we serve a God who is both interested in our problems and able to take care of them.
When trouble looms, prayer is always a good first step to take. But having a foundation upon which to build our prayers also makes a difference. Jehoshaphat, the king of Judah, faced an enormous challenge. Three different tribes—the Moabites, Ammonites, and Meunites—simultaneously waged war against him. Most leaders would have crumbled under such pressure, or at the very least taken drastic measures, but Jehoshaphat was a wise leader. Though afraid, he did not strike out against his enemies. Instead, knowing that God was interested in his dilemma, he “turned his attention to seek the Lord” and proclaimed a fast throughout the land (2 Chronicles 20:1-3).
Jehoshaphat also knew that God, who was more powerful than any earthly problem, had done miraculous things for Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, and David. That same God would help him, too, in his hour of need. We should never underestimate the Lord’s interest in our affairs. He helped our biblical ancestors, and He can and will help His children today.
It’s easy to think our problems are unimportant in God’s eyes, but He doesn’t feel that way at all. Whatever concerns us concerns Him. If we, like Jehoshaphat, turn to the Lord and proclaim His power, He will intervene. And no matter how great our challenges are, God is greater.
The Lost Boys
Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! 1 John 3:1a
God’s generosity toward us is highlighted in the parable of the Prodigal Son, which is really about two lost sons. One of them physically runs away from home and wastes his father’s inheritance. The other son, although physically present, remains emotionally distant. He does not understand or accept his father’s love. Instead, he is focused on earning the father’s approval.
Although it’s easy to lose sight of God, He is waiting for us to return. God is not a reluctant Father; He created us and, like the father in the parable, stands ready to welcome us back into relationship. Just as a loving earthly father provides for, protects, and invests in his children, God does all this and more. He sustains our bodies and souls. He hears our prayers and delights in being intimately involved in our day-to-day lives. When we begin to grasp who He is and the relationship He longs to have with us, we find the peace, confidence, security, and meaning we are searching for.
Our heavenly Father understands our disappointment, suffering, pain, fear, and doubt. He is always there to encourage our hearts and help us understand that He’s sufficient for all of our needs. When I accepted this as an absolute truth in my life, I found that my worrying stopped. Charles Stanley