“Plans are established by seeking advice; so if you wage war, obtain guidance.” Proverbs 20:18 NIV
Recently, I have been reading the history of Israel in the Old Testament. In Genesis 12, God promised Abram a land (the Promised Land), a seed and a blessing. Interestingly, though He could have, God did not simply hand over the Promised Land to the Israelites. He told them that they would have to drive out the inhabitants of the land so that they could possess it. The books of the Old Testament are filled with accounts of the nation of Israel going to war against the people living in the Promised Land.
Often before setting out for battle against the people living in the land, the Bible tells us that the people “inquired of the Lord.” According to the dictionary, one of the definitions of inquire is to “seek for information by questioning.” So the Israelites asked questions like: “Who should lead in the battle? Is now the time to fight? Is this the people we should attack? How would You have us attack?” When they took the time to inquire of the Lord, their battles were successful. However, when they went to battle without inquiring of the Lord and in their own strength, they suffered major defeats.
I may not fight in physical wars but I do fight “battles” each and every day in my life. I am sure that you do too. How do I prepare for these “battles”? Sadly, sometimes my first response is to plan for the “battles” how I think I should approach them. This includes making decisions based on my own knowledge and opinions and not inquiring of the Lord. I have found that preparing this way usually does not turn out well. In Proverbs, we read “There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.”
However, when I take the time to inquire of the Lord about how He wants me to fight the ‘battles,” He answers me and shows me how to and when to fight the “battles.” When I inquire of the Lord, I am prepared for whatever I face. When I face my “battles” in His strength, I am successful.
In Psalms and Proverbs, we read “Man’s steps are ordained by the Lord. Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him, and He will do it. Commit your works to the LORD and your plans will be established.”
I invite you to join me as I seek to make it a habit to inquire of the Lord how He wants me to fight the “battles” before me. I will do this by intentionally spending time praying without ceasing and asking Him for wisdom which He gives generously so that I will be prepared as I follow Him into the “battles” I fight.
Sweet Edith Parks