Saturday, October 24, 2015

Running The Wrong Way

Have you ever felt alone in your faith? I'm talking serious, woe-is-me, "I'm the only one who is faithful to God in this situation" type of alone. For some of us, this has never been a problem. We have a good support structure - friends, family, pastor, minister - to see us through. But what about the lone ranger Christian, the one who has been hurt, the one who was kicked out of a church for something stupid. The one who sees that churches have flaws, and thinks that they don't need to be part of one. Or the Christian who is just struggling with something difficult and feels deserted.

Many of us have actually felt like this, or, at least at some point, will. It's not an uncommon thing, and it can hit the strongest of Christians. Look at Elijah.

But the Lord said to him, "What are you doing here, Elijah?"
Elijah replied, "I have zealously served the Lord God Almighty. But the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you, town down your altars, and killed every one of your prophets. I alone am left, and now they are trying to kill me, too." 1 Kings 19:9-10

That's a serious woe-is-me moment. I mean, I get it. He had been through some rough times in the last few years. First, he tells Ahab that there is going to be no rain for years. YEARS. And then God sends him to hide, and feeds him with birds by a brook for a while, until said brook dries up. Then he goes to live with a widow and her son, and God provides for the three of them with two bottomless jars of flour and oil. Then the son dies. What does Elijah do? He brings him back to life! At the end of three years of famine, he goes back to Ahab with a challenge, and that brings about the contest of Mount Carmel. There, God proved Himself to all the people of Israel, and the prophets of Baal were slain for their worship of a false god. Then the famine ends, and Elijah outruns Ahab's chariot. Jezebel threatens Elijah's life for the slaughter of her prophets to Baal, and he runs. And then he has his woe-is-me moment.

He has just seen some awesome things, and now he is running for his life. Not because God told him to, but because he is scared. And he thinks that he is alone. How could he not see that God would take care of him, after all that he had been through? The real question is, why do Christians today feel the same way? Why do we run when times get hard? Why do we turn away from God? Do we think that He has abandoned us? He has never been the one to turn away from us.

Elijah ran, but even then God took care of him. Gave him food, and told him to go to Mount Sinai, forty days away. God provided for him the strength to get there. And when he got there, God asked him, "What are you doing here, Elijah?"

Guys, don't let there be a "what are you doing here" moment with God. It's not a good thing. It means that you are running in the wrong direction. He loves you and will correct you if you need it, He's not afraid to have a tough love moment with you. He's always with you, He's got you covered.


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