What do you do when you are in trouble? Who do you speak to? Do you wallow in your problems and carry on with other vices like smoking or drinking?
In 2 Kings 19:1-7, King Hezekiah is in distress after receiving a letter from Sennacherib denouncing the Lord. King Hezekiah fears the king of Assyria, a more powerful nation, has made plans to overthrow his kingdom. Hezekiah, like all of us, has the choice to run away, ask his fellow man for help or seek God’s guidance.
Hezekiah could have chosen to surrender or to prepare his army for war. He could have stopped leading and instead ran away. He could have sought guidance from other men and followed their suggestions but instead, Hezekiah immediately took his problems to God.
“Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers and read it; and Hezekiah went up to the house of the Lord and spread it before the Lord. And Hezekiah prayed before the Lord and said: “O Lord, the God of Israel, enthroned above the cherubim, you are the God, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; you have made heaven and earth. Incline your ear, O Lord, and hear; open your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to mock the living God. Truly, O Lord, the kings of Assyria have laid waste the nations and their lands and have cast their gods into the fire, for they were not gods, but the work of men’s hands, wood and stone. Therefore they were destroyed. So now, O Lord our God, save us, please, from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you, O Lord, are God alone.”” – 2 King 19:14-19
Hezekiah’s prayer reminds us of the importance of putting God first when we are in trouble. He got alone time with God first and started his prayer with praise. Often when we are in trouble, we just want God to save us from our troubles. We often don’t take time to praise him and acknowledge what he has done. Hezekiah does the opposite. He acknowledges God’s power as the God of Israel and the King of Kings.
Hezekiah prays with confidence, a man of extreme faith, he knows that he needs God to overcome his situation. To be confident is to constantly be in the presence of God. We should ask ourselves why we are sometimes not confident when praying to God. Is it because we are not in his presence often? Is it because we doubt his power? We can learn a great deal from Hezekiah’s confidence.
The Lord responds to Hezekiah, letting him know that he would take care of Rabshakeh. Most of us have heard God speak to us and we do not listen. Hezekiah’s prayer is a perfect example of how we should approach our problems.