Waiting for Supplies
The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food in due season.(Psalm 145:15)
Psalm 145 is a Psalm of the Kingdom, and “The eyes of all wait upon thee” appears specially to point to the needs of God’s saints, of all that fall and them that be bowed down. What the universe and the animal creation do unconsciously, God’s people are to do intelligently and voluntarily. Man is to be the interpreter of Nature. He is to prove that there is nothing more noble or more blessed in the exercise of our free will than to use it to wait upon God.
If an army that has been sent out to march into an enemy’s country, and tidings are received that it is not advancing, the question is at once asked, what may be the cause of delay. The answer will often be: “Waiting for supplies”. All stores of provisions or clothing or ammunition have not arrived; without these it dare not proceed.
It is not otherwise in the Christian life: day by day, at every step, we need our supplies from above. And there is nothing so needful as to cultivate that spirit of dependence on a God and of confidence in Him, which refuses to go on without the needed supply of grace and strength.
Is this anything different from what we do when we pray? There may be much praying with only little waiting on God. In praying we are often occupied with ourselves, with our own needs, and our own efforts in the presentation of them.
In waiting upon God, the first thought is of God whom we seek. We enter His presence and feel our need to be quiet, so that He, as God, can overshadow us with Himself. God longs to reveal Himself, to fill us with Himself. Waiting on God gives Him time in His own way and divine power to come to us.
In the 20th chapter of 2 Chronicles we read the story of Jehoshaphat and the Israelites who hear that a powerful army is on the march coming to conquer them and make them slave. Most kings at that news would have assessed the strength of their army and prepared for battle. Jehoshaphat instead called the people together at the temple.
“Alarmed, Jehoshaphat resolved to inquire of the Lord, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah. The people of Judah came together to seek help from the Lord; indeed, they came from every town in Judah to seek him.”
2 Chronicles 20:3-4
This story illustrates the idea of waiting upon God. As the people assemble, Jehoshaphat prays one of the most incredible prayers recorded outside of the prayer Jesus prays in John 17.
“Then Jehoshaphat stood up in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem at the temple of the Lord in the front of the new courtyard and said: “ Lord, the God of our ancestors, are you not the God who is in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. Power and might are in your hand, and no one can withstand you. Our God, did you not drive out the inhabitants of this land before your people Israel and give it forever to the descendants of Abraham your friend? They have lived in it and have built in it a sanctuary for your Name, saying, ‘If calamity comes upon us, whether the sword of judgment, or plague or famine, we will stand in your presence before this temple that bears your Name and will cry out to you in our distress, and you will hear us and save us.’ “But now here are men from Ammon, Moab and Mount Seir, whose territory you would not allow Israel to invade when they came from Egypt; so they turned away from them and did not destroy them. See how they are repaying us by coming to drive us out of the possession you gave us as an inheritance. Our God, will you not judge them? For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you. ” All the men of Judah, with their wives and children and little ones, stood there before the Lord.
2 Chronicles 20:5-13
This is the model of waiting on God. Let me sum it up for us. First, Jehoshaphat acknowledges that God is sovereign over all and no one and nothing can resist His might. Second, he rehearses the promises and provision of God in giving them rather land and blessing. He speaks of the purpose of the building of the temple. Not a monument or merely a gathering place, but the place where God said He would meet with His people(see 1 Chronicles 6,7). Third, he brings the matter before God and listen to his words:
“They are coming to take our inheritance that You have given us, O God will you not judge them.”
Fourth, he recognizes that this thing is beyond their ability. Again hear his words:
“We have no power, we do not know what to do, but our eyes are on You.”
The rest of the story tells that God spoke through the prophet with specific instructions. Here they are:
Then the Spirit of the Lord came on Jahaziel son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, a Levite and descendant of Asaph, as he stood in the assembly. He said: “Listen, King Jehoshaphat and all who live in Judah and Jerusalem! This is what the Lord says to you: ‘Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s. Tomorrow march down against them. They will be climbing up by the Pass of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the gorge in the Desert of Jeruel. You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.’”
2 Chronicles 20:14-17
So God said, “Don’t be afraid or discouraged. The battle is not yours, but God’s.”
Over and over in scripture we read those words from God to struggling humans. I think He’s trying to say something.😊
Notice God knows the plans of the enemy: “They will be climbing up by the Pass of Ziz…………..”
Nothing the devil plans escapes the notice of God so he’s already lost before he begins.
Once again God says, “Don’t be afraid, do not be discouraged. Go out and face them tomorrow and the Lord will be with you.”
As Jehoshaphat waited for God, he and the Israelites worshipped and praised God. Great way to spend your time while waiting on God.
So the next day they prepared for the confrontation.
“Early in the morning they left for the Desert of Tekoa. As they set out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Listen to me, Judah and people of Jerusalem! Have faith in the Lord your God and you will be upheld; have faith in his prophets and you will be successful. ” After consulting the people, Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying: “Give thanks to the Lord, for his love endures forever.” As they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated.”
2 Chronicles 20:20-22
Sometimes it pays to wait on God. He always seems to come up with a plan that works even if it’s outside our box.
Finally, waiting on the supply of God provides us the necessary for the situation. God alone has all we need. In Acts 3, Peter responding to the lame beggars request said, “Silver and gold have I none, but such as I have give I Thee. In the Name of Jesus, rise and walk.”
How did Peter do that? Waiting on God and receiving from God His power. Such as I have give I.
Dr. John Thompson