28 Jun
28Jun

After battling a wicked king and slaying 450 prophets of Baal Elijah was spent emotionally and physically and possibly spiritually. He found a juniper tree and sat down under it. He begged God to just let him die. He felt utterly alone. 

We all have a juniper tree that we sit under when we are feeling the weight of the world bearing down on us. I don’t believe Elijah was pouting. He felt alone. Have you ever been in that situation and God sent someone to minister to you? God did just the same for Elijah. He fell asleep under that tree and an angel ministered to him. He told him to arise and eat, there was a cake baked on the coals and water to drink. He filled himself and I’m very sure exhausted, went back to sleep. 

A second time the angel woke him up and said very specifically “Arise and eat for the journey is too great for you” I love when God prepares us for a journey we didn’t know we were going to take. Elijah lived on the strength of those two meals that God had provided for 40 days and nights. He found himself at a cave and lodged, to find shelter. God asked him, “Elijah what are you doing here?” “Well, God I am jealous for you. The people worshiped a false God. And I am the only prophet left to defend You and they are trying to kill me” Don’t you know God looked down at him with frustration, exasperation and complete love. God saw Elijah struggling and knew that if he had leaned on others, he wouldn’t be feeling this way. God also knew Elijah’s heart. Elijah had a great passion for the Lord, and he walked closely with him. 

So God placed him in the biggest sight and sound theater ever! 'And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the Lord .” And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the Lord , but the Lord was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a still.... small.... voice. “What are you doing here, Elijah?” He said, “I have been very jealous for the Lord , the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.” No doubt God had compassion for Elijah’s plight. But He also knew what was best for Elijah. Sitting under a juniper tree or hiding in a cave doesn’t help our situation. And the Lord said to him, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus. And when you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. Yet I will leave seven thousand in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.” 

What?! 7000 in Israel? All this time Elijah had stood alone, and he could have had backup. One thing to consider and remind ourselves: Elijah was willing to stand even if he had to stand alone. But, don’t shut yourself off from others when you are in a great hour of need. We are never closer to defeat than in our moments of greatest victory. We are never as alone as we may feel. God is always there. God speaks more frequently in persistent whispers than in shouts.

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