Sea waves and rocks
Purposeful Living

Facing challenges: Let God take your side

How can we handle challenges in a godly way? How can we expect God to help us through difficult seasons in life? 2 Chronicles 16:9 tells us that God is very keen to strengthen and support those, whose hearts are loyal to him.

“For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him.” 2 Chronicles 16:9, NKJV

If we are truly committed to God, he gets involved on our behalf: he acts, directs other people’s hearts, lets us find favour and mercy before those in authority and turns around political and historical decisions.

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Facing the challenges of life

We all face challenges in life – again and again. Whether those that are particularly difficult, like a severe illness, or those that are just part of life.

Starting a new job can be one of those challenges in life. It’s an unknown territory with many unknown traps, colleagues we don’t know yet, a boss whose character we are not yet acquainted with.

Another challenge is when for the first time in life we leave the safety of our home and start university. There, we are confronted with a world we didn’t even know existed, a mind-set and a lifestyle we may not have been exposed to while growing up under our parent’s protection.

How to handle tough situations God’s way

Life can be scary, and so can the world we are living in. We may not be looking for challenges or conflicts, but what if they come looking for us? Then we must deal with them, whether we want to or not.

2 Chronicles 16 tells us about Asa, king of Judah, who was confronted with an approaching hostile army. A prophet of the Lord puts before him two alternatives of dealing with them.

In the past, when the mighty Ethiopian army had attacked Judah, Asa had trusted the LORD and was victorious. Now, Asa tried to protect Judah from the northern kingdom of Israel by enticing the king of Damascus to attack Israel. In doing so, he not only betrayed his fellow Israelites, but also a relied on worldly wisdom: scheming and manipulating.

Don’t rely on human wisdom

God does not want us to rely on our own wisdom or human understanding of handling situations: Blending in, in order to be accepted. Pleasing people. Flattering, pretending, manipulating, coercing, taking advantage of others’ weaknesses for our gain.

When we are facing tough situations, we need to turn to God to either lead us out or lead us through. If we are loyal to him, patiently wait for his intervention, and do not take matters into our own hands, he will intervene on our behalf. God will shift things, he move or remove people. God is able to turn situations around swiftly, protect us and promote us. There is nothing that can stand in his way.

God wants to get involved on your behalf

I find it intriguing that God is looking “to and fro” throughout the whole earth to find someone loyal. Another translation uses the term “hearts fully committed to him”. Are we so half-hearted, so ready to compromise, that God must search throughout the whole earth?

He wants to show himself strong on our behalf. All that God requires is an obedient heart that longs for his help, a heart that trusts him. He seems eager to find someone, almost desperate. Where are his loyal children who wait on him and believe he will come through for them?

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