In high school my worst subject was history. I do not know if I should accept all the blame for my low marks in history or if the teachers should bear some of the responsibility for my boredom with the subject.
However, once I started studying in university, history soon became my subject. I know that one professor did much to awaken my interest. He made the characters of history come alive as he excitedly described the people of each generation and their very interesting habits, prejudices, and world views.
I ought to have known that history was an important subject to study because whenever I picked up my Bible to read from it I was always encountering this person or that from the history of God's people. Clearly God thought history was important and kept much of it alive in the pages of the Bible for succeeding generations of His children.
Speaking of the recorded history of the nation Israel, Paul says,
"Now these things occurred as examples to keep us from setting our hearts on evil things as they did... These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the culmination of the ages has come." 1 Corinthians 10:6, 11 (NIV)
It is so significant for us to understand how the Lord has dealt with His people in the past. In this way we learn just how faithful our God is and how prone to sin and doubting we are as His children. Seeing the patience of God in the past will encourage us to return to Him when we have stumbled in our pilgrimage.
In our verses for today, we learn that as God's people read about the mighty hand of God delivering His children in the past, they become bold to ask where was that God today. In other words they see that there are similarities in history with the present problems, and so they are encouraged to pray.
You will learn how to pray about your present problems by studying how God dealt with His people in the past. Never cease reading the Bible, because it is full of history that can benefit us greatly in our trials of life.
You might want to start reading with the book of Genesis or Exodus. In Genesis you will read of God and the individual. In Exodus you will quickly start reading about God and the nation of Israel. Both books demonstrate the faithfulness of the Lord and His ways of delivering His people. You will quickly be encouraged to call on God to be to you as He was with those people of so long ago.
Remember history and you will learn from it. Learn from history and you will soon be praying for the God of the past to be present today. Start reading and start praying today. You will soon see the different it makes to know God's history.