“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged” – Deuteronomy 31:8 (NIV).
In our Christian life we often meet cases where someone had a pressing matter to speak to someone, but rather than go directly, first pleaded to God to go ahead of him or her in the matter. We see it in the case of Queen Esther, who sought out King Xerxes to prevent a pending massacre on her peoples.
Rather than first approach the king, which was forbidden, Esther decided to first, “gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law” (Esther 4:16). Because of these prayers God went ahead of Queen Esther. Once she approached the courts, “Then the king asked, “What is it, Queen Esther? What is your request? Even up to half the kingdom, it will be given you” (Esther 5:3).
After living for years in exile, Jacob decided to return to his people. However, he was afraid of meeting his brother Esau, who he had angered on several occasions, including tricking him and stealing his birthright (Genesis 25:33). Jacob not only first sent gifts ahead to woo Esau (Genesis 32:3-5), but did the most important of things then. Then Jacob prayed, “O God of my father Abraham, God of my father Isaac, Lord, you who said to me, ‘Go back to your country and your relatives, and I will make you prosper,’ I am unworthy of all the kindness and faithfulness you have shown your servant. … Save me, I pray, from the hand of my brother Esau, for I am afraid he will come and attack me, and also the mothers with their children” (Gen 32:9-11).
When Jacob finally met Esau, rather than the feared battle, “Esau ran to meet Jacob and embraced him; he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. And they wept” (Genesis 33:4). God had gone ahead of him.
These two examples show the importance of asking God to go ahead of us in an important matter and talk on our behalf before we make our case. It could be a case with a judge who is already set against you. There could be a neighbor with a boundary dispute or a boss not open to counter views. Maybe it is a spouse who has made up his mind on a certain matter that still needs further reflection, well, pray, for God to go ahead of you!
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I pray that you go ahead if me in that pressing issue, talk on my behalf, and let the glory go to you, this I pray in Jesus’s name.