I had a thought this morning (which is amazing at 8 am and I’m still working on my first cup of coffee). I was reading 2 Chronicles 20.15. I reacquainted myself with an old friend, Jahaziel. He stood firm and brave with the Spirit of God upon him among the other men of Judah and in the face of a mighty opposing army. A war was brewing. What caught my attention is very short. Jahaziel simply told his fellow Judahites, “…Do not be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.” That’s awesome and powerful by itself, but did you hear that? The Lord opened my groggy eyes this morning as though seeing it for the first time: If I’m trying to “fight” a battle that doesn’t belong to me but to God alone, is that stealing? In my own life, do I steal something from God when I take on my own struggles and suffering without acknowledging and following the one who’s really in charge? That’s like a private making a general’s decisions for him/her. I’m pretty sure you can be court martialed for that! When I try to usurp God’s authority to fix my own problems, is that not sin? Sin is always about what I want more than what God wants. And now, as I’m writing this, the song, “The Battle Belongs to the Lord” is playing in my head!
Notice also that Jahaziel also told his fellow soldiers not to be discouraged by the opposition. Why not? They seem rather aggressive and full of rage in my 8am stupor. Why shouldn’t I be discouraged by facing down what seeks to undo me, undo my faith, and undo my life? Answer: BECAUSE THE BATTLE DOES NOT BELONG TO ME! It’s not mine!
“If I’m trying to “fight” a battle that doesn’t belong to me but to God alone, is that stealing?”
What about you? I’m certain I’m not the only one on the planet who does this.
Today’s going to be different, my friends! Since you can’t see me, I’ll tell you what I’m doing: I’m holding my right hand up high in the air against my circumstances, struggles, and failures this morning and I’m saying to them, to the world, and to God, “This does not belong to me; it belongs to God. He is my King, my Commander-in-Chief, and I will fight in the battle if He asks me to or I will stand down from it, but I am no longer in charge of it. This battle belongs to God. He is the victor in the war and His victory is my victory — I can’t have real victory without Him.” I’m done with trying to steal from my God — not a good idea! Bad things could happen!
I know without a doubt, by His grace and mercy, all will be worked out in His will, His way, and His timing. God tells me these forces that oppose me are no longer my problems but His and I’ll be okay because I am His. Let the battle begin!