Tired and worn out he collapsed by the tree. His eyes gazed at the desert sand as it slowly breathed, but his body was too tired to obey his thoughts. He lay there imagining what  cool water would taste like. So much had happened, so many things had gone well. Not only well, but powerfully impressive.

 Laying on the dust he felt the rhythm of his labored breathing, deep, painful. His chest rose up and down with each dry intake of air like a bottle being tossed about on the sea. Why had he run?  He played the scenario over and over in his mind. After all that God had done, why did fear grip him and replace the power with sheer panic. Sure Jezebel was wicked to the core, but didn’t God just defeat over 450 prophets of the god Baal, and 400 prophets of Asherah? It had been another dramatic intervention of God into the world.  

While the prophets of Baal and Asherah cried out, cut themselves, and pleaded with their false gods to show up, Elijah laughed and mocked them as nothing happened.  But when Elijah had placed his sacrifice to God upon the altar, and even doused it with water, God showed up and consumed the offering in a bright flash of fire!

Again, God had proven that He alone was God, and the people of Israel were ignited again. But when Elijah heard that King Ahab and Queen Jezebel were going to kill him, he fled.
Now, having recovered his breath, Elijah stared at the broom tree, and sleep overcame him.

We read about the exploits of Elijah in the book of 1 Kings.  Elijah is a man who was used powerfully by God, yet, like us, also struggled with his faith. So often we allow fear to rule our lives. We become it’s willing accomplice as we fret, worry, and tremble over the circumstances we find ourselves in.

Even though we have seen and experienced God working and moving in our lives, all it takes is that one phone call from our doctor or lawyer that sets our life off in another direction. This is true with me, and this was true of Elijah, and more than likely this is something that you can identify with as well.

Elijah was woken up and cared for by an angel. He was instructed to get back in balance, to rest, to eat.  Then God sent him on his way again. No matter what fear or circumstance we have run from, no matter what mountain is facing us, Jesus is there with you.  He lovingly strokes your hair while you sleep, and speaks about faith when you wake.  He knows your struggles, fears and pain and promises that you do not face them alone.

Faith happens when we place our lives, hopes, dream, and fears in the hands of the Carpenter from Nazareth. He says, “Trust me, I will never leave you or forsake you.” Elijah came back from his fall into faithlessness when he heard that still small voice of God, and so can we. God desires to work in and through us continually.  So activate your faith this week by trusting the  God. He has proven Himself over and over and waits for you!

Dei Gratia

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