When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among My people, if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and will heal their land. -- 2 Chr 7:13-14
Certainly it is the Almighty Himself who has come against our nation, and certainly we are guilty of horrific and alienating sins. So, it is He we have to deal with. He uses our leaders, our weather, our enemies -- anything and anyone He choses. But it is He who threatens our very existence.
The thing that some miss is the intensity required in this Scripture. The humility required is not merely limited to fasting. It is taking a position of total surrender, a letting go of all things related to our comfort and ease for His correcting rod. Like little children, we must recognize that we are helpless without Him -- meaning we will even accept punishment rather than depart from Him.
The prayer we are called to is an attitude of prayer. We are to dwell in it, calling out to Him without ceasing. These need not be eloquent or lengthy. "Abba, Father!" works. "What would You have me do?" is one of my favorites. The point is to be persistent, present, and diligent. Don't stop until He responds.
Add to these an intense desire to draw ever nearer to Him, an earnest need to know where we have missed it, a willingness to be completely broken, and an eagerness to turn from whatever sin He reveals. So the intensity required is profound. We can't move Him to mercy by mouthing the words or committing to social gatherings. We have to get completely honest and exceedingly serious about our position before Him.
Our Lord takes utterly useless beings and turns us into useful, productive servants, but He cannot change us until we are willing to be changed. We have to want it enough to choose to be remade. We have to desire Him above all else.
That is what this Scripture from 2 Chronicles is really about for us -- the importance of returning to right priorities. I cannot promise that our nation will be saved. The promise of 2 Chronicles was arguably made to Solomon and the Israelites upon the dedication of the temple, a specific promise for a specific people. However, I can tell you that His call to me has included forgiveness and provisions for those who earnestly apply its principles. Further, it is consistent with Who He is for Him to be merciful when a people return to Him.
However, even if our nation is destroyed we will fare much better personally for having returned Him to His rightful position of complete authority in our own lives. God can do much with one righteous, faithful servant. We just need to be willing to let Him.