Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river Ahava, that we might deny ourselves a before our God, to seek from him a safe journey for ourselves, our children, and all our possessions.
For I was ashamed to ask the king for a band of soldiers and cavalry to protect us against the enemy on our way, since we had told the king that the hand of our God is gracious to all who seek him, but his power and his wrath are against all who forsake him.
So we fasted and petitioned our God for this, and he listened to our entreaty.
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (New Revised Standard Bible Version Online)