“When it was reported to the house of David, saying, ‘The Arameans have camped in Ephraim,’ his heart and the hearts of his people shook as the trees of the forest shake with the wind. Then the Lord said to Isaiah, ‘Go out now to meet Ahaz, you and your son Shear-jashub … and say to him, ‘Take care and be calm, have no fear and do not be fainthearted because of these two stubs of smoldering firebrands, on account of the fierce anger of Rezin and Aram and the son of Remaliah’” (Isaiah 7:2-4 NASB).

reflect

Have you ever gotten bad news?

How often does a “report” of something, like in Isaiah 7:2, ruin us before anything even happens?

The bearer of bad news takes many forms: the weatherman, a doctor, a car mechanic, your spouse, your boss, your child’s teacher.

When the Judeans learned their enemies were drawing closer, they were shaken to their core.

These types of situations remind us that we’re never fully in control. One minute life is good; the next minute we wonder if we’ll survive.

In the story above, Isaiah remained calm while an army of Judeans lost their cool because he spent time in God’s presence in the previous chapter.

When we receive a bad report, let’s take it to God before we vent to anyone else, including the battle between our ears.

Isaiah went from heaven’s throne and attacked this earthly trouble with the truth of God.

God told Isaiah to remind the people that the report they heard didn’t have the final say.

Isaiah shared with King Ahaz that his problems are small in God’s presence. They shrink when God speaks into “stubs of smoldering firebrands.”

To put it in context, the fire of Judah’s enemies is about to go out.

Don’t let the noise of the report, like “the fierce anger of Rezin and Aram,” scare you into forgetting you have a Lion on your team.

In verses 6-7, God tells Isaiah that the kings “‘planned evil against you … It shall not stand nor shall it come to pass.’”

The enemy has evil plans for us, but God has higher plans for us. Fight with faith in who God is as your Father, Provider and Creator.

In “The Power of God’s Names,” Pastor Tony Evans wrote, “Sometimes God will allow you to experience larger problems in life because He wants to unveil a larger portion of Himself to you.”

react

> What’s some bad news you’ve received lately and how did you respond?

> What is God saying about the report you’ve been given?

pray

> Take some time to thank God for fighting for you. Thank Him for being bigger and stronger than life's problems.

> Ask God to help you see His presence in your “bad report.” Ask Him to show you where He’s working.