“O our God, will you not execute judgment on them? For we are powerless against this great horde that is coming against us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.” – 2 Chronicles 20:12 ESV
A little honesty tonight, friends. I had an incredibly difficult week last week. Imagine someone prone to anxiety to begin with, completely overwhelmed, and not taking intentional steps to manage their life well. That was me. I have much more to say on this in a later post, but for now, just know that it was not pretty. My anxiety overtook me and I lived in absolute fear for two days. Fear of what? Who knows! That’s the thing frustrating thing about anxiety.
In the middle of this mess, I sat down to continue reading You’re Going to be Okay, by Holley Gerth*, and she mentioned this little prayer in 2 Chronicles: “We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.” Later that week, I heard this same verse talked about on a Christian radio station. How faithful is our God? This obscure verse in the Old Testament that I never remember reading was following me around, giving me permission to rest, to be okay not knowing what to do, to feel, and to fix my eyes on the One who never changes and is on the Throne.
This prayer was born out of an account in the Bible where God’s people are facing a great battle. King Jehoshaphat is king over Judah at the time, and finds himself with a number of “-ites” coming after him and his people: Moabites, Ammonites, and Meunites (oh my!). In verse 20, he calls it a “great horde”. You know what? That’s what anxiety feels like at times for me – a great, big, giant horde of fear that I don’t know how I’ll face. He then says, “We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.” He didn’t ask for a battle plan or strategy, he just led his people in setting their faces on the One who saves. He returned them to Truth.
Shortly thereafter, as all of Judah is standing before the Lord (v 13), one in their midst says, “Listen, all Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem and King Jehoshaphat: Thus says the Lord to you, ‘Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed at this great horde, for the battle is not yours but God’s.” What did they do next? It says that they “fell down before the Lord, worshiping the Lord.” (v. 18) Did they still have to fight the battle? Yes (v. 17) but the victory was in God’s hands. He was their champion, and He is ours.
What are you facing that seems overwhelming and insurmountable this week? Call it what it is; don’t bother running from it. If it feels like a great horde of anxiety, tell that to God. If it feels like an elephant sitting on your shoulders, let Him know that. And then intentionally set your face before Him, seeking Him.
You don’t have to do this alone; Jehosaphat certainly didn’t. Do you need to see a therapist?** Maybe you need to have coffee with a friend who can hold you accountable to taking care of yourself in this season. Perhaps you need to ask your small group to pray for you. Whatever it is, just do it (no copyright infringement intended). And then worship. Worship through music, writing, taking a walk, pouring your heart out. Just worship. Bring your heart back in line with the Truth that God is in control and there isn’t anything that He cannot handle.
Rest in the reality that although we do not get to escape the hard parts of life, the victory is ultimately in God’s hands. We can lay our burdens at His feet and take on His light and easy yoke (Matthew 11:28-30). I’m praying for you this week, friends!
*I cannot recommend this book highly enough. If you’re in a season of overwhelm, please purchase it. You can find a link on our Things We Love page. It is steeped in Biblical truth and practical life management tips.
**Friends, please, please, please see a therapist if you think it would even be a little bit helpful. They can tell you if medication could help, and they can give you very practical ways to deal with life. This does NOT mean that you don’t trust God. Quite the opposite. It means that you are using the tools He has graciously provided to us in our modern times to be the healthiest version of who He created you to be, so you can live fully (John 10:10), love Him wholeheartedly, and love others genuinely.