When you and I do things to serve God, He should take care of us--right?
I mean, that's only fair. We follow and serve Him, and He meets our needs--preferably in the way(s) we desire.
Well, when we look at Elijah, we see that God does, indeed, meet the needs of those who follow Him, but that He doesn't promise to do so in the ways we'd prefer.
Elijah has just gone before Ahab, the evil king and husband to Jezebel, the WAY-evil queen, and pronounced that there would not be rain, or even dew, over the next few years "except at my word" (see previous post).
Now the Word of the LORD comes to Elijah and tells him to 'get outta dodge' (so to speak). Now he is told to go hide.
"Leave here, turn eatward, and HIDE in Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. You will drink from the brook, and I have ordered the ravens to feed you there." (1 Kings 17:4 emphasis mine)
Well, that stinks!
After all, he is apparently doing Gods' will and being God's spokesman...you'd think there'd be some 'perks' that come with that, right?
Well, yes and no--God does help him avoid being killed (which is a definate perk), and does feed him...but def. not in the way Elijah expected and wanted.
What did Elijah do?
He obeyed...and God met his needs. "The Ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning, and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook." (v. 6)
Why did God do it this way?
We're not told, but there could be lots of reasons:
He could have been wanting to teach Elijah to depend on Himself (ie, the LORD) only.
He could have been teaching Elijah to be ready for the persecution which would come later.
He could have been teaching Elijah to clarify 'needs' vs. 'wants'.
He could have been teaching Elijah to really consider whether God--the LORD--was worth serving, even if he didn't immediately 'reap the benefits' (answer: Yes!).
There are lots of times that God brings us into a situation that does not meet our expectations.
A situation which may be more challenging than we expected, or which may require more 'faith' than we thought we had.
It may be that the Lord allows us to come into a situation in which our dedication to Him--to following Him, "no matter what" is tested.
So be it.
Remain faithful. Remain obedient. Remain strong...and God will meet your needs, and will care for you.(See Matthew 6:25-34)
He does not promise us comfort, riches, or success (according to this world's standards), but He does promise to meet our needs, as we put Him and His Kingdom first.
I believe He's still looking for faithful people--like Elijah--who will serve Him...despite persecution, despite discomfort, despite tough circumstances.
Will YOU be one of them?
By the grace and strength of God, I declare here and now that I WILL!
Will you join me?