Then Azariah son of Obed, moved by the Spirit of God,
went out to meet Asa. He said, "Listen carefully, Asa, and listen Judah and Benjamin: God will stick with you as long as you stick with him. If you look for him he will let himself be found; but if you leave him he'll leave you.
For a long time Israel didn't have the real God, nor did they have the help of priest or teacher or book.
But when they were in trouble and got serious, and decided to seek God, the God of Israel, God let himself be found.
At that time it was a dog-eat-dog world; life was constantly up for grabs - no one, regardless of country, knew what the next day might bring.
Nation battered nation, city pummeled city. God let loose every kind of trouble among them.
"But it's different with you: Be strong. Take heart. Payday is coming!"
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)