Then Asa took silver and gold from the treasures of the house of the LORD and the king’s house, and sent them to Ben-ha’dad king of Syria, who dwelt in Damascus, saying, “Let there be a league between me and you, as between my father and your father; behold, I am sending to you silver and gold; go, break your league with Ba’asha king of Israel, that he may withdraw from me.”
And Ben-ha’dad hearkened to King Asa, and sent the commanders of his armies against the cities of Israel, and they conquered I’jon, Dan, A’bel-ma’im, and all the store-cities of Naph’tali. And when Ba’asha heard of it, he stopped building Ramah, and let his work cease. Then King Asa took all Judah, and they carried away the stones of Ramah and its timber, with which Ba’asha had been building, and with them he built Geba and Mizpah.
At that time Hana’ni the seer came to Asa king of Judah, and said to him, “Because you relied on the king of Syria, and did not rely on the LORD your God, the army of the king of Syria has escaped you. Were not the Ethiopians and the Libyans a huge army with exceedingly many chariots and horsemen? Yet because you relied on the LORD, he gave them into your hand. For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show his might in behalf of those whose heart is blameless toward him. You have done foolishly in this; for from now on you will have wars.”
[1 Chronicles 16: 2-9 Revised Standard Version]
I have to admit that I have seen many a desperate prayer answered for me when the times were rough, but when the dust settled and the easier times came, I forgot about how God delivered me and resorted to my own cleverness. I considered my resourcefulness a gift from Him and it was all good to fall back on it. But my abilities are tools to use, not something for me to trust, rely on or believe in. [KSB]