Editor’s Note: The AMI QT devotionals from Aug. 9-15 are provided by Cami King, a staff at Journey Community Church (Raleigh).
Devotional Thoughts for Today
2 Kings 6:8-10
Once when the king of Syria was warring against Israel, he took counsel with his servants, saying, “At such and such a place shall be my camp.” 9 But the man of God sent word to the king of Israel, “Beware that you do not pass this place, for the Syrians are going down there.” 10 And the king of Israel sent to the place about which the man of God told him. Thus he used to warn him, so that he saved himself there more than once or twice.
Life flies at us in a lot of different ways and adversity comes in many forms. But the absolute worst form (in my humble opinion) is the ambush – those unexpected things that catch us off guard and disrupt our lives when least expected. The King of Israel was facing the prospect of a literal (military) ambush. An opposing nation lay in wait for him and his troops in order to take them down when they were not expecting a fight. But here we learn a valuable lesson: for the people of God, the Lord himself is the ultimate defense because he can see what we cannot see and knows what we do not yet know. And when we need Him the most, He enters in – even when we are not yet aware of the situations that will necessitate our need for Him.
The older I get the more I realize I have no idea what’s going on – in my life… in the world… in general. There are a lot of unknown factors. If I make this move, if I choose this option, if I do that thing… then what? And more often than not, the “then what” that I come up with isn’t quite what happens. And to make matters worse, just when I think I have a handle on things, the waters change course and I’m left scrambling trying to get my bearings. But this passage reminds us that we can rest assured that God is not surprised. And even the unknown factors that we are unable to control or account for or foresee are known by our God and He has already considered them as He leads us step by step through life.
We don’t have to fear the ambushes that come our way, because our heavenly Father already knows and will aid in the ways we need – He’ll warn us or re-route us and do what only He can do. We don’t have to worry about the unknowns because God has already accounted for them – He often prepares us without us even knowing what we’re being prepared for. And when it’s all said and done, we will not be overtaken if we simply continue to walk in faithful obedience to Him.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for defending me against the ambushes in my life. I choose to rest in Your hands, knowing that You will not allow me to be overtaken. I surrender my worries about the unknowns to You. I surrender my frustrations about the unexpected to You. You have demonstrated time and time again that You will fight for me. Help me to be still.
Bible Reading for Today: Galatians 2
Lunch Break Study
1 O Lord, you have searched me and known me!
2 You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
3 You search out my path and my lying down
and are acquainted with all my ways.
4 Even before a word is on my tongue,
behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.
5 You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high; I cannot attain it.
Questions to Consider:
Spend some time meditating on the passage above. Read and re-read the verses a few times (the slower the better), thinking about where they land with you and what their implications are for your life and your personal relationship with God. Below are some questions that may help your time of meditation:
- What does it mean that the Lord “searches” and “knows” you? How have you experienced this kind of intimacy with God?
- What does it mean that the Lord “searches out your paths” and is “acquainted with all your ways”? How has this practically played out in your life?
- How does this vast knowledge of God encourage you? How does it challenge you?
Some see David’s words in Psalm 139:5 as an expression of discomfort with the vast knowledge of God (the kind of discomfort one might feel when completely exposed to another, unable to hide the things we don’t want them to see). While we may be tempted to merely tremble, we can also take great comfort in God’s omniscience (knowing everything) because while we are known completely by Him we are at the same time loved unconditionally by Him. And when it comes to life’s unknowns and unexpected moments, there is even greater comfort in knowing God is not surprised by anything. Are there specific situations or areas in your life right now where the omniscience of God can be a source of comfort? Spend some time offering those areas to the Lord.