Isaiah 31:1 “Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help and rely on horses, and trust in chariots because they are many and in horsemen because they are very strong, but they do not look to the Holy One of Israel, nor seek the Lord!”
“Take shelter! Strong and potentially dangerous storms with possible hail damage have been issued for the following counties . . . .”
The alert sounded over the radio the other day while I was driving to a nearby mall. I was now in a dilemma. Should I turn around and go home, or should I continue my shopping trip and hope I could find appropriate cover if the storm actually did hit?
These kinds of weather occurrences regularly arise in our state during the spring season, and it behooves all Ohioans to recognize the signs and be familiar with the best safety procedures for the warning issued. Can you imagine if during a thunderstorm warning everyone took cover under the nearest tree? Or as a twister’s path of destruction drew near a town the residents all scurried to the attic to ride out the storm? These actions would be foolish and very possibly deadly! When faced with imminent disaster, it is important to seek the right kind of shelter and protection.
God’s people were in danger. Over and over they had disobeyed His commands, sought after other gods, and disregarded the warnings of the prophets. These wayward people were soon to suffer the consequences of their unwise decisions. A cruel enemy army was threatening their existence and they were in a quandary as to what to do. Where could they seek shelter from the strong troops that stamped their boots on the threshold of their cities?
There was only one wise thing to do, but the stubborn children of God refused to do it. Despite their history of God’s protection and provision, these rebels rejected the Lord and turned to the foreign nation Egypt for help against the enemy. In their minds the strong horses and horsemen along with the numerous chariots were their best hope for protection.
The prophet Isaiah warned against this foolish decision, but to no avail. Like hiding under a tall tree in a thunderstorm, God’s people put their trust in an ungodly country comprised of sinful humans just like they were. In so doing they brought even more disaster upon themselves. They didn’t understand that this decision would result in both nations’ coming to an end together.
I am afraid we are no different! When difficulties arise we often choose help and protection that sounds logical to us. We run first to friends or family, we rack our brains for a solution, or we try to fight and argue our way out of a dispute. But how many times do we seek help from the Lord as our first resort? In prayer we can lay our circumstances before Him asking for wisdom, protection, and justice. His ear is open to our cries, and He is the perfect shelter in any and every storm.
God’s nation ignored His warnings, but there is a chance for us. Maybe the next time a life storm is brewing we should reconsider hiding in the attic or under the tallest tree. Instead why not do the wise thing – look first to the Holy One of Israel and seek the Lord! In His hands is the safest place to be!!