“I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip — He who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, He who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord watches over you-- the Lord is your Shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will keep you from all harm — He will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore,” [Psalm 121]
“All you Israelites, trust in the Lord — He is their Help and Shield. House of Aaron, trust in the Lord — He is their Help and Shield. You who fear Him, trust in the Lord — He is their Help and Shield,” [Psalm 115:9-11]
When you get lost, when you don’t know where to go and when you get yourself in a bind and see no way out, remember that the LORD really is watching over you. We need “HELP!” moments to find a necessary clarity that it is the LORD who is our Help. David repeatedly called the LORD his “Help” and put little stock in his own abilities. But it’s very easy to slip into an unhealthy self-reliance. To find how numb most of us are to our need for help, all we have to do is ask one another, “How are you doing?” The typical response is, “Fine.” But many times we are far from ‘fine’; we want to cry for help but can’t bring ourselves to ask.
I can’t help but wonder how close King Asa was to calling for help. Asa was generally a good king of Judah but he let his pride get the better of Him. In 1 Kings and 2 Chronicles we read how Asa was a good, godly leader. In fact, his legacy, according to 2 Chronicles 14:2, was that “he did what was good and right in the eyes of the LORD, His God.” Asa was one of the good guys. But several years later, Asa got a little too full of himself and his arrogance and self-sufficiency tripped him up. Many Bibles will preface chapter 16 of 2 Chronicles with this title: “Asa’s Last Years” -a foreboding description of how Asa ruined his otherwise good status.
When the King of the northern tribes of Israel, Baasha started causing Asa trouble, rather than call out to God for help, Asa took wealth from the Lord’s Temple and forged an alliance with the pagan king of Aram. When a prophet came and relayed God’s disappointment, Asa threw the prophet in prison! He also started oppressing his own people out of sheer spite toward God! And when he haughtily assumed that he could overrule God’s commands (after all, he was the king), by offering incense in God’s temple (even after the priests tried to encourage Asa not to do this) God struck Asa with leprosy –in his forehead. God specifically struck Asa with sickness in his forehead to convey a message: “Asa, you are not loving me with all of your mind; your pride has made you sick in the head!” Asa never repented and never called on God for help. Asa’s pride never allowed him an occasion for humility and a change of heart.
Don’t be an Asa. When your pride tries to tell you that you’re “fine,” remember how powerless you are without God. By grace we are saved –so that none of us can ever boast. We can all find refuge in the LORD in our time of need; He is our Help and our Very Great Reward. We can call out to Him courageously because His marvelous grace will always respond. Prayer that is confident about God’s grace is never ashamed to cry out for help. Let’s all be realistic and remember that we are weak but He is strong. Call out to Him often and remember to cast all of your anxieties on Him as well because He cares for you.
Pray with confidence,