You’ve probably heard the exclamation, “jumpin’ Jehosaphat!” But you might be about as familiar with him as you are with John Jacob Jingle-Heimer-Schmidt (na na na na na na na!!!!). There’s much more to Jehoshaphat than a silly saying, however. Check out 2 Chronicles 20:1-17 to read the beginning of a pretty cool story that happened to him…(I’ll wait, while you read.)
Before heading into the battle, we find in verse 21: “After talking it over with the people, Jehoshaphat appointed a choir for God; dressed in holy robes, they were to march ahead of the troops, singing, Give thanks to God, His love never quits.”
It’s an important reminder to us to be people to head into situations where we must depend on God (i.e. all of life) with thankfulness. Thankfulness not for His performance, not for His actions, not for His favor….but for His LOVE.
In this story, we know what ends up happening: Several armies all ended up converging at the same time in their pursuit of God’s people, and became confused as they met. They all attacked and killed one another. When God’s people arrived to what they assumed would be a battlefield, they came upon bloody masses of bodies that had been killed in a giant battle. God’s Word had proven faithful.
Certainly everyone there was thankful. It took 3 days for them to collect all of the treasures, weapons and supplies from the fallen armies. They entered Jerusalem and went to the temple with harps and lyres and trumpets. The fear of God came on all surrounding kingdoms….etc. It was an important victory, to be sure.
But what I want to point out today is the scripture we hear quoted all the time. Verse 21 – “Give thanks to the Lord, his love endures forever.” The memorable moment of how thankful God’s people are comes not after the victory (although there was plenty of celebrating), but before it.
What are you trusting God for these days? What insurmountable obstacle lies before you? What conflict does there seem to be no resolution for? What do you want to happen, and feel God desires it, but you have no idea where the resources will come from? This adoption journey has definitely been one for us. Both the financial aspects of raising money (you can still give if you’d like!), and even more-so the period of unknown waiting for a referral.
We don’t all have a Jahaziel (the prophet who spoke to encourage Jehosaphat and his people) telling us God will fight the battle for us. To assume that would be to rip this out of context and give us license to try anything. But it does give us a great model to follow. Whatever direction we travel, and whatever obstacle seems to be in the way – we should lead/begin our journeys with declaring our thankfulness to God. We are thankful for His Love, that endures forever. For us, it’s a great reminder that even more than we desire to bring home a daughter who needs a family – it’s all meaningless if in that process we forget or reduce how important God’s love for US is as well.
No matter where our journey takes us…we have so much to be thankful for…and that is the foot we lead with. May your life discover new victories in Christ as you do so…