March 28 – Friday
Fasting Item(s): TV, Movies, DVD’s & Videos.
Today’s Scripture: 2 Kings 6:16 “’Don’t be afraid!’ Elisha told him. ‘For there are more on our side than on theirs!‘” NLT
Question: Have you ever been in a fight?
Devotion: I can recall from my childhood and early adulthood where I was in a few fights. The play-by-play details are still there…perhaps altered a bit to place myself in a better light as to how things actually turned out. If you’re like me, you don’t like conflict – even just a few disagreements here and there can grate on someone’s nerves. So back to our focal point, fighting. I’ve typically been in individual fights where I had to defend myself from a potential offender to my face. Now there is a raw determination of a fight, do I run or do I stand my ground and fight back? This is called “Fight or Flight”. In my later teens, I was working with my peers on how to prepare for the worst in terms of self-defense. We called this, “sparring”. We would take turns attacking each other as well as defending ourselves. Only a few black eyes and one broken nose is all it took to realize that I am not meant for this sort of thing. So on the day when I got into a real fight, I was faced with the option to run or stand up for myself and I chose the latter. Now my fighting wasn’t for noble reasons, so I shouldn’t carry on further with the details. My thought in sharing the fight scenarios is because I’m pretty sure we’ve all been there at some level. That isn’t implying that you’ve had a bloody or broken nose, but that there has been intense conflict and you had a moment in time where you had to decide if you’re going to fight or run. If you decide to run, what was your reasoning to flee and likewise, if you decide to fight, what would you hope to gain from standing your ground? I’ve learned quite a bit about value in the last 10 years of my life. I have begun to place much more value on relationships than stuff. Reading this 2 Kings passage shows me that there are times when I’m called to fight for others, those individuals who aren’t able to fight for themselves. This can be a daunting task, especially when it isn’t for yourself. The devil operates out of fear, so it isn’t any surprise that he attacks through our senses. In this today’s Scripture, the Israelites are at war with the Arameans and they are out manned and powered. Their visual sense of being outnumbered is overwhelming them to the point where they are about to flee. Elisha sees something different though. Early one morning, Elisha’s house was surrounded by an army sent by the king of Aram. The king knew that Elisha was behind all his foiled attempts at destroying the Israelites and he was going to put an end to it, once and for all. Elisha’s servant noticed that there was no where to flee, so he said to Elisha, “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” (NIV) The prophet of God answered, “Don’t be afraid. Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” (NIV) Elisha then prayed, “Open his eyes, LORD, so that he may see.” (NIV) His servant then saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around the Arameans’ Army. Elisha showed these men mercy by asking God to simply blind them, then leading them to the king of Israel to show them kindness by giving them a feast. After supper, the men from Aram went home and stopped raiding the Israelite’s territory. So what can we learn from this Scripture? What if we ask God to blind someone and He doesn’t, then what? What if we run and not look back? There are a lot of scenarios that could play out in a variety of ways, but there should always be One constant – is it us deciding or is it God deciding? We need to see with spiritual eyes what the Lord is calling us to do and to not fear the outcome. Always remember, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you, He will never leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 (NIV)
Prayer focus: Kids and Parents pray for your friends and children in other countries who may not know Jesus.
Here’s the free Lent Calendar to follow along the path God is calling us to. Take others on the journey with you, but not in a “look at us” sort of way. This is a humble journey to be endured with the help of God.