If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. (2 Chronicles 7:14)
In my opinion, this is one of the most power-packed verses in all the bible regarding prayer. How much more could we ask for from God but for Him to forgive us, hear us and heal us? These are God's direct words to Solomon in response to Solomon's prayer for Israel at the dedication of the temple. It was as if Solomon knew ahead of time that his people - and even he - would turn away from God at some point. I suppose that is always a given for all of us, huh?
Let's break down the verse a bit, just for fun (okay, my fun) and application to our own lives.
If my people which are called by my name ... - Just as the Israelites were God's chosen ones, we are also God's chosen people. (John 15:16) God wants us to be prosperous so we can give glory to His kingdom.
shall humble themselves, and pray ... I haven't been here in awhile on this blog. The "H" word - humility. It takes humility to come to our knees before God in prayer and admit we can't do it all or can't do anything, doesn't it? (1 Peter 5:5-6)
and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways ... If we seek God's face we will have no choice but to turn from our wicked ways because the light of His face will expose those ways so that we have no choice but to loathe them before a Holy God. We must pray for this exposure so we know what to change. (Psalm 139:23-24) God will hear our prayers when our hearts are pure. (Psalm 66:18)
then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land... Now there is a promise. God will hear us. God will forgive us. And God will heal our land. Folks, God isn't saying he may. God says He will.
Have you gotten enough to think about? enough verses to ponder? Remember, these aren't just my thoughts. I'm merely trying to share my interpretation of what God is saying through His word the best way I can. I've done enough talking. Please join me in praying...
Father, I want to seek Your face in all that I do. I want to humbly submit my will to You, only doing what You would have me to do with my life. But, my pride and my perceptions and my plans get in the way. Forgive me for the times where I know I've failed you, and show me the areas hidden to me now where you don't approve. Heal my "land". Show me Your face. Help me to live for Your glory. Amen.