As When Children Come to the Point of Birth

Manna

They told him, “This is what Hezekiah says: This day is a day of distress and rebuke and disgrace, as when children come to the point of birth and there is no strength to deliver them.” … Therefore pray for the remnant that still survives (2 Kings 19:3, 4z NIV).

This is a lesson about prayer. There comes times in life when some difficulty occurs in the fulfillment of something in your life. You may find everything work out fine till the last step. But then you find things going wrong. That is the time when extra prayer is needed. We find this happening in this incident. Try to understand this. You will surely profit from it.

King Hezekiah was threatened by the king of Assyria, who took away much of the treasures from him. Then the Assyrian king again sent his commander with threatening messages to Hezekiah. They even asked him in a mocking way as to what was the source of his confidence. And they mocked the God of Israel too. But Hezekiah had given orders to his people not to answer these threats. Instead he took the matter to the Lord in prayer. He sent a message to Prophet Isaiah, a part of which you read as the verse above. He did this because his confidence was in God and he knew that extra prayer was needed very much then.

The imagery used here is to be noted. It is of childbirth. It is indeed a disgrace if when the moment of delivery comes, the mother does not have the strength to give birth to the child. In practical and spiritual terms, it means the inability to see through some task which was brought near to completion. If that last thing is not done; it means that the entire effort that went before becomes meaningless. It is like building a home and unable to fix the front door! Such kind of situations need to be taken to the Lord in prayer. You also can seek the prayer support of close friends.

When you do not trust in your own strength, but has placed your confidence in the Lord, He will surely answer your prayer. In this case, God gave an answer to King Hezekiah. He was told that the Assyrians would leave on hearing a certain report. It happened exactly like that. God can do so in your case too. But you need to take the matter to God in prayer. Your cause will be thus upheld by God!

[If you read the rest of the story you will find that there was a second threat. This time Hezekiah himself went to the temple to pray. And God answered him in an overwhelming manner. So be encouraged to pray.]

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