Have you ever felt truly helpless? Trapped? Surrounded on all sides?
This year I have found myself facing challenges that were beyond my natural capacity to navigate. I have been pushed beyond my stress limits, but even then the challenges would not abate. I have found myself on the driveway in the starlight talking loudly to Jesus.
There are so many of you who have recently faced challenges of your own. I’ve heard some of your stories, and there are so many more that I haven’t heard.
The old adage, “God won’t give you more than you can handle,” couldn’t be further from the truth. If you live on planet Earth for very long, you most certainly will have to deal with more than you thought you could handle.
Thankfully, two things are true. The first is that the human capacity for resilience is absolutely astounding.
The second is that no one ever said we were supposed to handle it all on our own.
Yesterday morning, while listening to the Daily Audio Bible, I was reminded of one of my favorite Bible stories. It involves the prophet Elisha and an entire army who hunted him down and surrounded him. (Talk about more than one can handle!)
As a backdrop to the story, the King of Aram had his plans foiled over and over again by the prophet Elisha, who would hear from God and tell the King of Israel his plans of attack. When he found out what Elisha was doing, the Aramean King was furious. He sent his army to hunt Elisha down and surround the city where he was staying. (II Kings 6)
When Elisha’s servant woke up, walked outside, and saw that they were literally surrounded by soldiers and chariots, he was terrified. Elisha, however, responded with confident assurance. He told his servant not to be afraid, because those that were on their side were greater than those who were with the Aramean army.
He then asked God to open his servant’s eyes, and the servant, amazed, could see the mountain around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire.
A human army pales in comparison to a heavenly one.
It’s all about perspective.
What do we see? In moments of fear, we see the obstacles in front of us as insurmountable. Our fear rises and the challenges loom ever larger before us.
What if, however, a heavenly army is actually present? How might our perspective of the hardships at hand change if we could see the Kingdom of God at work behind the scenes?
I don’t know what obstacles you face right now, but be encouraged, friend. You may very well have more on your plate than you feel like you can handle. You might feel completely surrounded on all sides, but it’s not over. In Christ, we are never alone.
Just maybe, your hill is alight with chariots.