READING: Isaiah 37-38, Colossians 3
“Incline your ear, O Lord, and hear; open your eyes, O Lord, and see. . . .”
Today, I’m humbled. I’ve read the prayer of Hezekiah as he bore the burden of a potential attack by Assyria. He first “tore his clothes and covered himself with sackcloth” (Isa. 37:1), a sign of great grief and repentance. He rightly turned to God and went to the house of the Lord. Later, he prayed a prayer that began with these words as he addressed God: “O Lord of hosts, God of Israel, enthroned above the cherubim, you are the God, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; you have made heaven and earth. Incline your ear, O Lord, and hear; open your eyes, O Lord, and see. . . .” (Isa. 37:16-17). It’s that opening that humbles me today.
Hezekiah approached the throne of the One who is the “Lord of hosts,” the Lord Almighty, the Warrior for His people. He is the “God of Israel,” but He is also the God of all the earth. He alone is God—a strong claim in the polytheistic world of the Old Testament (and still in our world today). He rules from between the angels on the Ark of the Covenant, but the earth is His because He made it all. He is no distant God who remains separate from His creation. Rather, He is a God of whom Hezekiah could ask, “Hear” and “see” the plight of His people. He is a personal God like no other, the God who hears our prayers. It’s no wonder, then, that Hezekiah did not make his request on the basis of his own goodness; he instead made his request in order to magnify God’s name: “So now, O Lord our God, save us from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you alone are the Lord” (Isa. 37:20).
I read these words, and I think about my own praying. I don’t speak to a God who has ears but doesn’t listen; he’s not a God with eyes that cannot see. Instead, I’m privileged to speak to God who made all that is made. He’s the master over the nations, the ruler of eternity—and still He lets me talk to Him. He alone is God, and I’m only one of 7 billion people now on the earth—but I get to talk to Him. And, not only does He let me talk to Him, but He also actually listens to me! He even allows me to approach Him boldly through His Son (Heb. 4:16).
- Let it sink in that God allows you to talk to Him.
- Talk to Him all day long, ever being amazed that He hears you as if you were the only one praying then.
PRAYER: “Father, You are lord of heaven and earth. Thank You for loving me and listening to me anyway.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Isaiah 39-40, Colossians 4