7568 - 1 Kings 17 - The Faith of Elijah

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Over the past year, here at SONlight I have filled a number of different roles: editing, writing and recording messages, graphic design, fixing toilets, repairing database code, networking, upgrading computers and newsletters, and designing a new website.

The Lord has truly prepared me ahead of time for the work He had here at SONlight for me to do, but it is only through the Lord’s grace and strength that I have been able to do any of what he has called me to do. There has just been too much for me to have done everything on my own or according to my own knowledge.

But really, isn’t that our true role in life? Because if we think the Lord will only call us to do things we are capable of under our own strength, then we will find ourselves in positions where we don’t acknowledge our true, great need for God.

Elijah Obeys the Lord’s Calling
At the beginning of the year I took on a new role here at SONlight as Executive Director, I have come under increased burden and stress, and I have struggled with fear and doubt.

In the midst of those overwhelming thoughts, I sought the Lord’s direction and encouragement, and He led me to study 1 Kings chapter 17; the introduction of Elijah.

At the beginning of this chapter, Elijah is called out of his unknown previous life, into a very public event. He is to confront Ahab, the most-wicked king the northern kingdom of Israel ever had, and Elijah is to inform Ahab that there will be a drought.

God does not tell Elijah beforehand what will come after this meeting, and we see in verse 2 that it is not until after this confrontation that God tells Elijah to hide in the Kerith Ravine. It is there, that Elijah is commanded to drink from a brook (and remember this is during a drought) and be fed by ravens.

Again, no word from God about what will come next. And it is again not until after the brook has dried up, that God tells Elijah to go and depend on a Phoenician widow.

And really, this is not a command that seems good in our eyes, because God does not tell Elijah to depend on a Jew, or even on a wealthy benefactor. Instead, the Lord tells Elijah to travel a long way to another country, where a gentile will provide for him. And not even a prosperous gentile, but a gentile widow.

Once again, Elijah is obedient, and trusts in the provision of God, and we then see the miracle that happens as the Lord provides for Elijah, the widow, and her son for quite some time on their single handful of flour and a tiny bit of oil.

All throughout, Elijah is completely dependent on the Lord’s provision. He is placed in situations where he is incapable of providing for himself and being obedient. To obey the Lord, is to depend totally on the Lord’s supernatural provision.

Elijah does not know the Lord’s master plan, or even a tiny detail of the next step. He is led into situations with no clear way out, but Elijah follows, and then when God’s timing is perfect, God takes him into what is next.

Overturning Fear and Doubt
In my own life, I have come to see a few parallels with this passage about Elijah. Like Elijah, I was called into ministry from nothing of significance. The Lord called me to quit my steady full-time job, and enter into full-time ministry. But not just any ministry, he called me to work for SONlight, a listener supported ministry that did not have a budget to pay me full time.

But since May of 2009, I have been able to be paid full-time in my service here at SONlight because of a generous endowment a few years ago, and now I am unsure of how, when, or where the Lord will provide for the future. But, I know that just as he did with Elijah, He is able to provide, and I just have to put my trust in Him.

Follow Elijah’s Example
So as you reflect with me on the example and testimony of Elijah in 1 Kings 17, consider the ways in which Elijah stepped out of his “comfort zone” and into an obedient walk with God. Let go with me of that which you hold on tight, so that you can grasp a hold of God instead.

Take on that deep calling that you know you can’t do without God, so that HE gets the glory and not you.