In I Kings 19, we read that Elijah believed he was the only man left who was following God. As a prophet of the Lord, he spent his time warning the Israelites to stop following false gods and to return to the one true God. He was a zealous man, heartbroken that the Israelites had broken down God’s altars, rejected His covenants, and even killed His prophets. And to top it off, his own life was in danger as the queen was planning to kill him.
Certain that he was soon to meet his death, Elijah went and spent the night in a cave. God though, told him to go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, because He was going to pass by.
Three things happened next. A great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart, shattering the rocks before the Lord. But the Lord was not in the wind. Next, an earthquake shook the ground, causing the earth below Elijah’s feet to tremble. I’m sure that by this time, Elijah himself was trembling. But once again, the Lord was not in the shifting of the earth beneath his feet. Next came a raging fire, but the Lord was not in the fire.
After the fire, though, came a gentle whisper. And in that quiet, gentle whisper was where Elijah found God.
How often, in the constant roar of life, do we stop and look for God, pausing to seek His face? Most of the time, life seems to be rushing past us like a fierce whirlwind or earthquake. Commitments keep us jumping, disaster spins round us, and the urgent takes over the important. But it’s often in the stillness of a morning sunrise, the quite touch of a friend, or in the pages of His Word where we encounter God face to face.
Just like with Elijah, the Lord knows what he needed, and he was strengthened by God’s presence. Jezebel still wanted to kill him, and his trial had not "gone away," but God gave him the strength to continue. What compassion God showed to Elijah. God was tender with him, and in Elijah’s distress He provided for His immediate needs by sending an angel who told him to eat and drink the food the Lord had provided because the journey was too much for him.
As in Elijah’s life, think about what compassion God shows to us each day. Just as the angel of the Lord comforted Elijah, He has given us so much; His love, His mercy, His forgiveness, His Spirit, adoption as His children, and much more.
In closing, read James 5:11b and John 14:16 and thank God for the blessings he has given you today.
Can you share, in a few words, one blessing God has given you recently?
Lisa and Ermalee
(Lisa Harris and her mother, Ermalee)
Scriptures taken from the NIV