You know sometimes as a Christian we can feel abandoned by God. You know what I am talking about when nothing seems to be going the way we think it should we will turn around and ask were God is in what we are facing. I know many people have even allowed those moments to cause them to doubt whether or not God is real and if their relationship to Him is really worth the struggles they face. Far too many people walk away from the Lord because they are expecting one thing and they don't receive it. I was studying this morning and was struck as I was reading these passages from 2 Kings 13:
1 Jehoahaz son of Jehu began to rule over Israel in the twenty-third year of King Joash's reign in Judah. He reigned in Samaria seventeen years.2 But he did what was evil in the LORD's sight. He followed the example of Jeroboam son of Nebat, continuing the sins that Jeroboam had led Israel to commit.3 So the LORD was very angry with Israel, and he allowed King Hazael of Aram and his son Ben-hadad to defeat them repeatedly.4 Then Jehoahaz prayed for the LORD's help, and the LORD heard his prayer, for he could see how severely the king of Aram was oppressing Israel.5 So the LORD provided someone to rescue the Israelites from the tyranny of the Arameans. Then Israel lived in safety again as they had in former days. 2 Kings 13:1-5 (NLT)
This may seem a little harsh but do our choices that we make even as born-again believers sometimes cause us the problems we face; and rather than take responsibility for those choices we just see it easier to lay the blame on God. Jehoahaz was just one of nineteen evil kings that reigned over Israeli from the death of Solomon till they were carried off to Babylon. Throughout the history of Israeli we see that God sent trouble their way in an attempt to draw them back to Him. Maybe we need to look at that in our own lives. Are our trials we face not so much as punishment but like a shepherd's rod and staff just something God is using to nudge us closer to him?
Do you think you are too far gone, that there is no hope for you? The thing that struck me as I read this was even though Jehoahaz did evil before the Lord and caused Israeli to sin; God heard his prayer. It was not because he had repented and changed his ways it was because of the promise he made to Abraham that his seed would be a blessing to the whole world. He did it not for the individual but because the nation had to survive. I wonder sometimes if we today as Christians fall into that category. We run around doing what we like wake up wondering if we have gone too far and decide that there is no going back. Let me tell you When God saved you he made you a promise just as He did Joshua as he was about to lead Israeli into Canaan.
'5 No one will be able to stand against you as long as you live. For I will be with you as I was with Moses. I will not fail you or abandon you. Joshua 1:4-5 (NLT)
Today I can tell you that promise is applicable to your life, you have not gone so far that he cannot reach you. He is thinking about you today and while we question our lot in life he has so many blessing just waiting for us. However it requires we take action on our part; this is where it gets tough we have to abandon our own desires and live a life that He has called us to. I know you don't want to hear that. I refused to listen to it for years. The writer of Hebrews tells us some of what we need to do to see this promise fulfilled.
1 Let brotherly love continue. 2 Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. 3 Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body. 4 Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous. 5 Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you." 6 So we can confidently say, "The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?" Hebrews 13:1-6 (ESV)
We have not been abandoned by God in our world today we are the ones who are guilty of abandonment. I pray today you look at your own life is God trying to lead you back to Him have we strayed from the paths of righteousness if so it's never too late to turn back to Him and pray that he can deliver you from your situation. Be blessed as you walk in the Light of God's Word.
Rev. Brian H. Mathis CSC
Ordained Minister Church of God, Cleveland TN
Currently serving as the Associate Pastor of Discipleship at Westminster Baptist Church
Graduate of Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary MDiv in Chaplain Studies