Have you ever been woken up for the hundredth time with anxious thoughts? Are you troubled about opinions and circumstances that you never would have cared about a few years ago?
Currently, that’s where I find myself, waking up worried about a bunch of people, places, and things that I would not have previously cared about. It’s especially bad when I focus on the fact that
the world doesn’t play fair like my justice-oriented mind expects it to. That’s when I lose my peace and can become bitter.
This past weekend our guest speaker, Amy Seiffert, said, Jezebel sold her culture of power, position, and prestige. It was intoxicating, and many people bought into it, including King Ahab. When Elijah wins the battle and God shows up so huge, you would expect that King Ahab would come to his senses and the kingdom would be saved. That seems fair, right? But Ahab runs back to his wife, Jezebel.
1 Kings 18:1-3
When Ahab got home, he told Jezebel everything Elijah had done, including the way he had killed all the prophets of Baal. 2 So Jezebel sent this message to Elijah: “May the gods strike me and even kill me if by this time tomorrow I have not killed you just as you killed them.” 3 Elijah was afraid and fled for his life. He went to Beersheba, a town in Judah, and he left his servant there. Then he went on alone into the wilderness, traveling all day. He sat down under a solitary broom tree and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough, Lord,” he said. “Take my life, for I am no better than my ancestors who have already died.”
King Ahab and Jezebel both had a choice. They could have decided to follow God’s kingdom, but instead continued to follow Jezebel’s Kingdom — a pursuit of power and prestige.
Elijah found himself on the run despite being obedient to God. When I am being obedient and things go badly, I can be tempted to start fighting against the world instead of trusting that what God has for me is going to be good. Elijah’s story in 1 Kings 19 shows us that God provides comfort in these times that is better than any treasure the world could provide me. The fresh bread, the whisper in the cave, and the next steps of Elijah’s journey are exactly what he needed. He chose God who is a consuming fire and a good father, and I pray we can have the faith to do the same every day.
Are you worried about worldly things that have taken a grip on you?
Are there people or places in your life that are taking away your peace?
Take inventory of what you are allowing into your eyes and ears. Listen to a new podcast that will encourage you in God’s Word. (Susie Larson Live is one of my favorites.)
Read 1 Kings 19 and reflect on all of the ways that God provided for Elijah.
Oh Lord, please touch our hearts and speak to us so we as a people may choose your kingdom. Pluck away the influences in our lives that are taking us away from you, and replace them with blessings that satisfy. Give us the wisdom to see what we need to let go of and the courage to trust you to let it go. Amen.
This post was written by April Willer, a regular contributor to the LivingItOut Bible Study.
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