2 Chronicles 25
Amaziah—like his father—started out well as king. Later, he too strayed from the ways of the Lord, but as kings of Judah went, he was a pretty good one. (Which is, I think, a sad commentary on the kings of Judah!) Before he went astray, however, he had a habit of listening whenever the Lord talked to him. One such occasion was recorded in this chapter:
"[Amaziah] hired a hundred thousand fighting men from Israel for a hundred talents of silver. But a man of God came to him and said, 'Your Majesty, these troops from Israel must not march with you, for the Lord is not with Israel—not with any of the people of Ephraim. Even if you go and fight courageously in battle, God will overthrow you before the enemy, for God has the power to help or to overthrow.' Amaziah asked the man of God, 'But what about the hundred talents I paid for these Israelite troops?' The man of God replied, 'The Lord can give you much more than that.' So Amaziah dismissed the troops who had come to him from Ephraim and sent them home." (vs 6-10)
Often, I find myself in Amaziah’s shoes. I have set out to do something that I thought was a great idea, only to become convinced that God didn’t think it was such a great idea. And then, I ask the same question Amaziah did: But what about the investment I’ve already made in this? Those investments can be financial or emotional or relational, and when an investment has already been made, it is that much harder to turn back.
That’s why God reminds us that He can always give us more. No investment we have made on our own terms is ever going to bring blessing to us like God can. But often, our vision is so narrow, so limited. We can’t see like God sees, so we don’t think like He thinks. Amaziah mistakenly thought there was strength in numbers. But God knew that the strength was found in a reliance on Him. And as much as parts of that were missing in Judah, it must have been non-existent in Israel.
So, the next time you reflexively want to "close your hand" around something for fear that you’re going to lose it, let’s remember that God can always give us more. When we relax, when we trust Him, and when we let go, He is able to do things in our lives that we never would have thought possible. Instead of asking Him to fulfill your plan, ask Him to enlarge your vision. He wants you to see things as He does!