2 Chronicles 19:3
“Nevertheless good things are found in you, in that you have removed the wooden images from the land, and have prepared your heart to seek God.”
There are times when we truly intend to do something good, and then we get in the middle of it, and it turns out we did something wrong. King Jehoshaphat of Judah had done so many good things in Judah: removing the places of pagan worship, bringing the Book of the Law to everyone, reestablishing the priesthood. But then he was persuaded to help Israel’s King Ahab in his war against Ramoth Gilead.
The story of their campaign is quite a tale, but in the end the battle went against them. King Ahab was slain, but Jehoshaphat lived and he returned to Jerusalem. In our verse today, we see how a seer explained to him why he had survived. We know that Jehoshaphat was very different from Ahab:
2 Chronicles 17:3-4
3 Now the LORD was with Jehoshaphat, because he walked in the former ways of his father David; he did not seek the Baals,
4 but sought the God of his father, and walked in His commandments and not according to the acts of Israel.
You see, despite the example set by others – his forefathers since David, his neighbors in Israel – Jehoshaphat set his mind on the Lord God, on His commands and His statutes. Jehoshaphat wouldn’t put up with idolatry, and he made sure that everyone in his kingdom had a chance to hear the Word of God. (2 Chornicles 17:9) So even when Jehoshaphat made a mistake in siding with Ahab, God preserved Jehoshaphat and favored him again.
The LORD is merciful and gracious,
Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.
Yes, we will have to face the consequences of our actions when we make mistakes of judgment. But so long as we set our hearts on the Lord, He will watch over us and favor us. When we humble ourselves and come to Him in repentance, God will see the good things in our hearts and forgive us – and will even bless us again.
If you have made a mistake in your life, an error in judgment, just humble yourself and seek God again, seek His face and His forgiveness. Do not give up on Him simply because you’ve taken a wrong turn. Prepare your heart, receive His grace, and move on to a new life in Christ.
Heavenly Father, I thank You that Your mercies are new every morning. I come to You on bended knee today, seeking the forgiveness only You can give. Please, sweet Lord, lead me in paths of righteousness for Your sake, and help me to lead others that same way. Amen.