1 Kings 17:1-7 (Part 2) – When Real Life Happens…That’s When Real Faith Begins

Posted: February 18, 2019 in 11-1 Kings

1 Kings 17:1-7 (Part 2 of 2)

Elijah Fed By Ravens

Do you remember right after you accepted Christ as your Savior that there was this “perfect time”? It is right after salvation that we find that we are on fire for the Lord. We love everything about the church where we came to know the Lord. We love everything about the people there. We want to serve as much as we can and in as many ways as we can.

Then, real life happens. Hard times come. Something happens that, as the old Southern saying goes, “licks the red off our candy.” We experience a hardship whether its emotional, spiritual, physical, financial, it happens to all of us as Christ followers. Those euphoric first few months and maybe even a year or two after salvation, everything is going great and we are thankful to the Lord for changing our lives. That part is true enough for all of us no matter where we are in our walk – we should always be thankful for what God has done in us and continues to do in us and through us. However, when we are young babes in Christ, that first crisis in life after salvation can sometimes throw us off our feet. Naively, we think that nothing is ever going to go wrong again and that we will remain in this state of post-salvation bliss forever. Then, trouble comes.

It is in that first crisis that we begin to learn to put wheels on our faith. It is in the times of crisis after salvation that we begin to learn about depending on God more and more. It is in the fires of a crisis that we learn that faith is a choice and not always a feeling. It is great when we have those mountaintop experiences. Don’t get me wrong. But faith in God is often best taught to us in the hard times. It is then that we simply have to hold on to our belief that God has “got this.” It is in the crisis time that we must make the choice to hold on to God when everything in your flesh and everything that Satan can get you to think, “this Jesus stuff doesn’t work!” If you are there right now, join the club. Each one of us who have been Christ followers for any length of time will experience times of crisis. This may be your first experience with a crisis since accepting Christ as your Savior, but it will not be your last.

It is in the crisis times that we quit riding the emotion train that comes with our salvation experience and for months afterward. When we are on the emotion train, we think that we have to feel that feeling all the time, that euphoria. However, it was Paul that told that we must “renew our mind.” That requires choice and dedication. To be a Christ follower, we must learn to choose Jesus everyday even when things are tough and are not going the way we want. To be Christ follower, we must hold on to our faith by choice even when everything is screaming not to have faith.

We all have been there. It is not a matter if you have trouble in life after salvation, it is a matter of when. Often when we are Christians and we are seeking to serve the Lord with all our time, talents, and resources, Satan comes after us to dismay us. Satan wants us to be frustrated with God. Satan wants us to give up or give in. It is in these times that we must hold on to Jesus more tightly than ever. It is in these times that we learn about trust in God. It is in these times that the trust in God that we have and are clinging to is the only way to get to the other shore. Sometimes, the hard times teaches something we need to learn because God is preparing us for what’s next in His plan for us.

Today, we remain in 1 Kings 17:1-7. This time, let us look at this passage from the perspective of Elijah’s circumstances after he enters into his ministry. Let’s read now about what happens to Elijah after he makes his first prophetic announcement:

Chapter 17

1 Now Elijah, who was from Tishbe in Gilead, told King Ahab, “As surely as the Lord, the God of Israel, lives—the God I serve—there will be no dew or rain during the next few years until I give the word!”

2 Then the Lord said to Elijah, 3 “Go to the east and hide by Kerith Brook, near where it enters the Jordan River. 4 Drink from the brook and eat what the ravens bring you, for I have commanded them to bring you food.”

5 So Elijah did as the Lord told him and camped beside Kerith Brook, east of the Jordan. 6 The ravens brought him bread and meat each morning and evening, and he drank from the brook. 7 But after a while the brook dried up, for there was no rainfall anywhere in the land.

In this passage, we see that after giving his first prophetic announcement, the first ministry activity of Elijah, he finds that God has directed him to the wilderness. There, he only has the food that the birds God has directed to provide. There, he only has the water from the river to drink (and it eventually dries up). In other words, following God made his circumstances immediately more difficult from a human perspective.

Here, Elijah’s circumstances got worse after entering into his ministry. He is down by the river and eating whatever the birds will leave him. Not exactly the best of circumstances! But as you shall see, Elijah continues to trust in the Lord. Sure, he has times where he cries out to God about his circumstances, but ultimately his has this thread of hope in the Lord that He clings to. He keeps being obedient. He keeps trusting in the Lord. Sometimes, we have to do that too. We have to trust in the Lord that He has this situation under control. We have to trust that He is working it out the way He wants it. He have to trust that His way of working it out is better than the plan that we had because…well…He is God after all. We must trust in the Lord that whatever circumstance that we are in, He has a purpose in it. He is preparing us for what’s next in our lives. We are conditioned by culture to want what we want and want it now. However, when it comes to the perfection of our salvation, we must have trust, hope, and patience with the Lord. Even if the current situation seems so unbearable, trust in the Lord to work it our for what He has in store for you.

The hardship that you are going through now will become part of your testimony of how beyond all circumstances that you trust in the Lord and that He delivers. He may not do it the way we want or when we want but we always learn that His way was best. The hardship that you are going through now can be an inroad with someone else who does not know Jesus Christ as their Savior. The hardship that you are going through right now will be your testimony to them of how God changes lives, how God gets us through hard times through his faithful provision for our lives. Your testimony can demonstrate how faith in the hard times is why you are standing here today. Trust that God will use what you are going through right now for His glory in the future.

Amen and Amen.

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