When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” the servant asked.
“Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”
And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.
[2 Kings 6: 15–17]
Have you ever been so frightened that you cannot see the truth even when it’s right in front of you? Elisha’s servant was terrified when he saw the army of the king of Aram. He couldn’t think straight and he panicked, asking Elisha what they were going to do. Elisha calms him and tells him not to be afraid, then asks God to open the servant’s eyes to see they are not alone.
Many things can frighten us too, and like the servant we can become rabbits caught in headlights, unsure what to do – so we do nothing. Many people fear the decline in the church and worry about what will happen in the future. However, instead of trying new things and trusting God to lead them in a new path, they become afraid and freeze on the path. They want things to go back to ‘normal’ and for everything to restart as it did before. They are frozen in the headlights of what is happening and too afraid to open their eyes to what God is doing.
God of new beginnings:
open our eyes to where you are at work
in our lives, communities and churches;
help us to be free of the headlights that freeze us;
calm our fears of change and the unknown.
Give us the courage to lift up our eyes and see where you lead us,
that we have the strength to follow you,
knowing that you are with us
and that this is greater than anything we believe is against us.
Open our eyes and open our hearts we pray.