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Aug 21, 2022

Opened Eyes

Opened Eyes

Speaker: James Gallaher

Series: Opened Eyes

Category: Sunday Morning

What has come to your life that caused fear to take hold?

What do you see if you look around the world? How do you see what you are experiencing in your life? Are you concerned about what you see? There are challenges as we hear what people are concerned about. 

Of all the northern and southern kings in Israel, very little had anything to do with God. God spoke to prophets to give the kings messages and warnings. Elijah was one of those prophets and Elisha was his follower. Elisha asked Elijah for his anointing when he died and Elisha then received the anointing. Israel would drift to God and then away from God. Punishment usually brought them back to God. 

2 Kings 6:8-19 God showed favor to Israel by giving Elisha information about an attacking enemy. Israel had inside information on how to come against the King of Aram. The King of Aram thought someone inside his kingdom was giving out warnings but one of his servants knew that Elisha heard from God about all that was going to happen. This frustrated the King of Aram. 

There is nothing hidden from our God. God knows even the plots of the enemy and even when we are unaware.

The King of Aram sends his army to surround Dothan, the city where Elisha resides, in order to take Elisha down. Elisha was not liked because the gift that God gave him disrupted the King's plans. 

For everyone that is called, there is a gift that resides inside. When that gift is used to glorify God, it will disrupt the plans of the enemy. The enemy will try to distract us from what God has called us to. 

As the army surrounds Dothan, Elisha's servant walks out to see the city surrounded. Fear sets in and he informs Elisha and asks what we should do. Elisha answers in verse 16, And he said, “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are greater than those who are with them.”

The first thing Elisha wanted to do is to release the fear. When things show up in unexpected places, we tend to fear what we see in front of us. We fear when we are vulnerable. We fear when we are outnumbered and all is stacked against us. No matter what we do, we can't find the light at the end. When we face problems with no plan, it leaves us with fear. Things pop up and we are challenged and unprepared... broken relationships, financial hardship, child's illness... We see the trauma and can't see further than that. If we want to move forward, we have to deal with our fear. Fear paralyzes. I Peter 5:8 Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Fear paralyzes and also causes blindness and keeps us from seeing the resources to help us. 

Elisha prays for his servant to see what was already there. The angels didn't come because Elisha prayed. They were already in place. Elisha knew their presence. When we fear and are blind, we need our eyes opened to the resources around us. We tend to see the problem and not that God has a solution. 

Elisha wanted to remove the fear and his solution was to ask for opened eyes. Verse 17 Then Elisha prayed and said, “O Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” And the Lord opened the servant’s eyes and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

Elisha was not concerned about the problem because he knew the solution. We sometimes pray amiss not seeing a solution. Prayer is the key to having peace over panic. Peace is the absence of fear. Would peace change a situation you are in?

Philippians 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Philippians 4:5-7 Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Paul is in a jail when he writes this. It's not a blanket statement but a statement of rejoicing no matter the circumstances. God has not abandoned us. He is near. Bring your prayer to God and accept His peace. Elisha prayed; the enemy didn't change but eyes were opened. The problem was still there but the eyes were looking up to God who surrounds us. Let's give the things that are consuming us to God in prayer. Peace is a promise to those willing to come. 

What do you need prayer for? Prayer to replace fear with peace? Prayer to make the impossible possible? Prayer to open our eyes to spiritual realities? 

What has come to your life that caused fear to take hold?

Would peace change a situation you are in? 

Do you tend to see and focus on problems or solutions?