Fresh Hope – 19th July 2019

The environment in which you experience an event dictates the outcome. If for example you experience the event of meeting a lion, and your environment is a zoo or safari park, I’m sure it will be a great experience. If you experience a lion in the environment of the Serengeti plains of Africa by yourself without any form of self-protection, it could well be a truly terrifying experience!

Psalms 46:1-3 | NIV God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,3 though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.

This idea can help us better understand the many references to God as a refuge in the Bible. When we learn to start the day seeking His presence for the day, giving over any concerns and worries to Him, we are, effectively building a safe enclosure in which to experience that day’s events.

There is a great example of this in 2 Chronicles with King Jehoshaphat.

In 2 Chronicles 19, you can read how King Jehoshaphat goes through Judah and calls all the people back to God appointing judges and Levites to carry out their correct duties.

Then in chapter 20 verse 2 ‘Some people came and told Jehoshaphat, “A vast army is coming against you from Edom!”

This was the worst possible news and a fight Jehoshaphat knew he couldn’t win in the natural. Then in verse 3, his response is to seek God first.

God’s response soon comes in verse 15:
‘Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s.’

God encourages Jehoshaphat and all the people, that the battle belongs to the Lord!

If you read on, they go to battle and as they go they sing praises to God, and as they reach where they should be encountering the conflict, they find all the enemies dead! Not only had they avoided death as below in verse 25 they had so much plunder it took three days to collect!

This is such a great picture of how it’s not ‘what we face’ but it’s ‘how we face’ it that makes the difference! I encourage you to learn no matter what we face, if we experience it with the backdrop of Jesus, the context of a God who has already won, we can actually enjoy and be abundantly blessed by what should really harm us!

Luke Cartwright

A daily devotion for a better way of living.