Jun 25, 2012
That’s how I felt last Wednesday.
I was facing a problem that was frustrating, complicated, with no real solution.
I knew I should pray about it — but I didn’t have much faith.
I didn’t feel like prayer would do any good.
Hezekiah to the rescue
But that morning I had read Hezekiah’s prayer in 2 Kings 19.
He had received a letter from the king of Assyria — who said that if Israel didn’t surrender he would destroy them.
We’re talking ASSYRIA — whose empire ruled the world, whose army was undefeated, who brutalized those they captured.
So what did Hezekiah do?
He spread this letter out before the Lord, and started to pray.
How would you begin?
So — if you were him — how would you begin your prayer?
Maybe — God, we’ve got a huge problem …
Or — Lord, Assyria’s got this really big army …
Or — God, remember what you did at the Red Sea?
That’s not where Hezekiah started
Here’s the first words out of his mouth —
“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.” (2Ki 19:15)
Hezekiah starts with a HUGE declaration about God —
- He is “Lord” — Yahweh — able to do whatever HE chooses to do
- He is enthroned above the cherubim — King over all the angels
- He alone is God over all kingdoms of the earth
- He made heaven and earth — everything that exists
His first 29 words focus on God. Not a peep about Assyria.
How this helped me
I was thinking it wouldn’t do any good to pray about my problem.
But then I remembered the problem Hezekiah faced — and how he prayed.
So I thought I would give it a try.
I began my prayer with a huge declaration about God —
God — You are God.
There is no God besides You.
You alone are God.
You created the heavens and the earth.
You rule every detail of every thing.
Your wisdom is flawless — your goodness is perfect — your love is abounding.
My heart changed. Really, truly, changed.
I saw and felt and knew that —
- God was sovereign over this problem.
- God had purposefully allowed this problem.
- God was going to bring great good through this problem.
- God would give all the wisdom I needed about this problem.
- God would go to work as I prayed about this problem.
Seeing God changed everything.
I felt peace. Strength. Hope. Courage.
And I knew that as I prayed about the problem — God would work.
That’s why Hezekiah — and others in the Bible — begin prayer with huge declarations about God (check out 2Ch 14:11; 2Ch 20:5-9; Neh 1:5; Dan 9:4).
What happened with Hezekiah?
After starting with a huge declaration about God — he asked God to save them from the Assyrian army.
And God answered. Did He ever.
That night the angel of the Lord killed 185,000 Assyrian soldiers.
And the king of Assyria gave up and went back home.
God took care of Hezekiah’s problem.
He will take care of your problem, too.
Take some time today to pray — and start with a huge declaration about God.
How does this affect your prayer? What do you experience? I’d love to hear — leave a comment below.
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And here’s some related posts you might find helpful —
Spurgeon's take on trials
How my grandmother fought the fight of faith
Facing Problems or Trials?
God is huge -- a 3-min video
(Picture is from everystockphoto by Quevaal.)