God’s Presence

1 Kings 19

There are things that if we are honest we may find we are fearful of.  I don’t mean the fear of creepy crawlies and things like that.  I mean the things that make us feel sick to the stomach with dread.

Elijah went from being incredibly bold and courageous – in power and strength – to a quivering wreck in the blink of an eye.  In faith he orchestrated a miracle before Ahab, with no fear of recrimination or doubt of the outcome.  His trust in the Lord was complete.  So what happened?  With one message from Jezebel, Elijah’s faith seems to have evaporated and he was fearful.  Elijah had succeeded in cutting himself off from God, the fountain of his strength and allowed self doubt to creep in.

What is interesting is where Elijah went.  He went into the wilderness.  Some people fear wilderness experiences.  Yet the Holy Spirit led Jesus into the wilderness and Jesus returned from the wilderness full of the Holy Spirit.  God is always present, if we take a moment to acknowledge him. Sometimes we have to journey through the wilderness before we find that we can listen.  Elijah will have arrived there disappointed and exhausted – and all poured out.  How many times have we found ourselves in that place?

What did Elijah really want?  What did he really expect.  He said “It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life, for I am no better than my ancestors.”  We are not told of Elijah’s reaction to the angel appearing before him; his actions certainly don’t seem in any way to question the angel.  And so he ate and drank a heavenly banquet in the middle of the wilderness, heavenly because it was provided by that ever present God, and heavenly because it was sufficient to sustain him for forty days and forty nights as he journeyed on to Horeb, the mount of God.

God showed Elijah that he wasn’t simply present in the “earthquake” and “fires” and “winds”, but he was also present in the silence.  With this in mind, God asked  “What are you doing here, Elijah?”   Elijah had to relearn where his help came from.  He needed to lift his eyes up to the mountains.  He needed to learn humility and know that if God was present it was enough.  Lord, open our eyes that we might see you.

Draw me closer, Lord

Draw me closer, dear Lord

So that I might touch You

So that I might touch You

Lord, I want to touch You

Touch my eyes, Lord,

Touch my eyes, dear Lord

So that I might see You

So that I might see You

Lord, I want to see You

Your glory and Your love

Your glory and Your love

Your glory and Your love

And Your majesty

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