2 Kings 6
This chapter has a special place in my heart, because the account of God opening Elisha’s servant’s eyes to see the army of God inspired the climax of my first novel. This scene portrays the miracle God does in each of us when He opens our eyes to how He is at work all around us. At the moment when we are most overwhelmed, when it looks like we are surrounded, when circumstances threaten to squash any hope of escape, this lesson tells us that we are never alone. Not just in the “Jesus is by my side” sort of way, which of course is more powerful than any army, but God has his angelic army always on duty in the lives of His people.
Sometimes these angels appear in the guise of other believers, praying with us, encouraging us, meeting our needs, and calling us to account when we falter. Other times, unseen warriors halt a car before it strikes, send needed resources at the eleventh hour, or rescue from certain disaster. Reading this account again reminds me to trust God even when I don’t see His army. It inspires me, as it did the heroine of my story, to stand boldly, knowing God has my back. He not only has my back, but His army goes before me preparing the way for the plans God has for me.
They delay my departure to avoid an accident. They arrange circumstances so that my daughters and I are not in the path of a tornado. They cause the tornado to literally hop over our home, destroying the home across the street (which was empty) and eight trees in our backyard, but leaving my husband and sons unharmed.
But what about the times when they don’t? What about the family that lost three children when a tree fell on their mobile home that day? Where were their guardian angels? Where were mine the day we were broad-sided by a Jaguar running a red light? Were they running late that day? Where were the angels at the high school in Parkland, Florida?
I don’t have all the answers for why tragedies happen. But I know from the testimony of God’s Word and my own life that God cares about the details of our lives, and He cares about our pain. I know that He sees the end from the beginning, and He allows tragedy only when it serves His eternal purposes. He views our lives on earth from the perspective of eternity and they are a mist, even the longest living among us today will one day pass away and their life will have been no more than a split second compared to eternity. From such a perspective even a life of constant, torturous pain will seem like only a momentary twinge compared to the glory of eternity.
When I’m tempted to wonder where my angels were, I measure God’s love by the cross, where He allowed the greatest injustice, the most horrific pain, the most tragic loss to befall His beloved and Only Son. Why? Why would He do that?
He allowed that because it was the only way for me to spend eternity with Him, for me to have salvation. Looking at the cross, I can say with confidence that there is nothing in your life for which God does not have an eternal reason. There is nothing that you experience on earth that in heaven will not be deemed worth the price you paid. There is no loss so great that it overshadows the gift of God.
May God open your eyes today to see His army all around you.