Immanuel Voices
June 20, 2019, 4:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Elijah Despairs (Week 4:4)


Elijah Despairs

 

1 Kings 19:16

The Lord said to Elijah, “. . . Elisha the son of Shaphat you shall anoint to be prophet in your place.”

 

Thought for Today

One of the biggest reasons Elijah struggled was that he was working alone. God was with him, but he had no earthly companion to share the burden. Elijah was alone when he faced the wicked king and queen. He was alone while everyone blamed him for the drought. He was alone when he faced the 450 prophets of Baal. No wonder he was emotionally and spiritually exhausted! We were created for companionship. Life is not meant to be lived alone. Challenges are not meant to be faced alone. Isolating people is one of the chief strategies of the devil. He knows that if he can isolate someone he can break them down. God understood this reality in Elijah’s life. So God commanded him to anoint a successor, Elisha. Now Elijah will have someone to train, to share the burden, and to know that the legacy of his work will continue. Who do you have sharing the journey with you? Whose journey are you sharing? Both aspects are important. Spend some time today thinking and praying over these questions.

 

Prayer

Lord, I thank You for the people sharing my journey and the people whose burdens you have called me to share. Encourage my spirit through them today. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

Friendship ... is born at the moment when one man says to another "What! You too? I thought that no one but myself . . . ― C.S. Lewis

 

Quote of the Day

The rise or fall, success or failure of your dreams is largely dependent on the association you build yourself around. ― Israelmore Ayivor

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June 19, 2019, 6:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Elijah Despairs (Week 4:3)


Elijah Despairs

 

1 Kings 19:9-10

There he came to a cave and lodged in it. And behold, the word of the Lord came to him, and he said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” 10 He said, “I have been very jealous for the Lord, the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.”

 

Thought for Today

Catastrophize. It’s a big word for a common problem people have. It means that you think something is far worse than it actually is. When God asks Elijah what the problem is, the floodgates of worry burst open. Elijah believes that all his efforts have been in vain. All the people have forsaken their covenant with God, destroying his altars and killing his prophets. And Elijah believes he is the only one left. Despair does this to us. Every problem gets bigger than it really is. Every challenge becomes insurmountable. The facts do not support Elijah’s complaint. The people have returned to the Lord after the duel with the prophets of Baal. There are 100 more prophets who are in hiding. In Elijah’s eyes his problems have become large and God has become small. God sends Elijah out on the mountainside to show him that he is wrong. God shows his power in a mighty wind, fire and an earth quake. He shows Elijah that He is gentle and compassionate with the gentle whisper. When you find yourself catastrophizing, consider the size of your problems compared to the size of your God. Nothing breaks us out of that rut like rediscovering that our God is immense. With God all things are possible, all problems are conquerable.

 

Prayer

Almighty God, in my moments of weakness and despair help me to remember just how big You are. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

God's glory is the big news of the Bible, and my desire is that it would be all about me, but really it's all about God's glory. — Max Lucado

 

Quote of the Day

If you aren't in over your head, how do you know how tall you are? — T. S. Eliot



Comments

06-19-2019 at 2:43 PM
Erica Ciro
Me too Jeanette!! I was reminded this morning in another devotion that we tend to underestimate God and His Power. We ask and expect too little from Him. He wants to give us so much more!!!
06-19-2019 at 6:38 AM
Jeanette Dall
I can identify with Elijah. I have a tendency to catastrophize too.
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June 18, 2019, 6:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Elijah Despairs (Week 4:2)


Elijah Despairs

 

1 Kings 19:4-8

But [Elijah] went a day's journey into the wilderness and came and sat down under a broom tree. And he asked that he might die, saying, “It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life, for I am no better than my fathers.” And he lay down and slept under a broom tree. And behold, an angel touched him and said to him, “Arise and eat.” And he looked, and behold, there was at his head a cake baked on hot stones and a jar of water. And he ate and drank and lay down again. And the angel of the Lord came again a second time and touched him and said, “Arise and eat, for the journey is too great for you.” And he arose and ate and drank, and went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb, the mount of God.

 

Thought for Today

I have a confession to make. Like Elijah, I struggle with self-care. I drive too hard for too long because it all has to get done. I tell myself I’m doing important things. People are counting on me. I am serving to Lord, for crying out loud! How wonderfully refreshing to discover that this is not what God wants from me. When Elijah had driven himself to utter exhaustion God does not rebuke him. God does not tell him to suck it up. God displays great compassion for His fallen prophet. After Elijah collapses in tears of self-loathing, God sends an angel with divine refreshment. The angel commands him to rise, eat and drink. Then the angel watches over him as he rests. A second time the angel nudges him awake and offers him food and drink before he continues. Traditional American values of work are at odds with God’s command to take rest seriously. As a culture we tend to bury ourselves in work with the expectation that when the work is done we will have time to rest. There are two lies hidden in that idea. The first is that the work will ever be done. We always find one more thing to do. The second is that work is supposed to come first. The very order of God’s work of creation shows that evening comes first, then morning each day. This is to say that we are to rest first and then work. When we work from a place of rest we are efficient and effective. Work is a joy! When we get it backwards we run out of steam before the work is ever done and work is a burden. God does not see rest as wasted time. It is time that prepares us for the work He has for us. Take time this summer to make rest a priority. Rest first and you will be amazed what God accomplishes through you.

 

Prayer

Lord, I confess that I need more rest in my life. Help me to set aside my fears and excuses that cause me to work to exhaustion, and find my rest in You. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

God never asked us to meet life's pressures and demands on our own terms or by relying upon our own strength. Nor did He demands that we win His favor by assembling an impressive portfolio of good deeds. Instead, He invites us to enter His rest. ― Swindoll Charles

 

Quote of the Day

Most of the things we need to be most fully alive never come in busyness. They grow in rest. ― Mark Buchanan

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