The God of Elijah!

It’s the early morning hours and I’m up reading with interest a story of the prophet Elijah. God had just revealed to him there would be no rain – not even dew – for three years. Essentially, he was told: famine coming!

What stood out to me was not only God provided for Elijah during this time of dearth, but it was HOW he provided that was so interesting.

In 1 Kings 17 verse 4, God “commanded the ravens to feed (Elijah).” We are told In verse six that they brought him bread and flesh each morning and evening; meanwhile, he drank of the brook. God provided food and water via birds!

Later, God told Elijah to go to Zarephath. God “commanded a woman there to sustain (him).”
Interestingly, she only had “a handful of meal in a barrel and a little oil in a cruse” for her and her son. Elijah – the man of God – comes along and instructs her to not only make a cake, but make it for him FIRST.

Now wait! This woman was a widow with barely enough. She wasn’t even making the proverbial end’s meet, so this request in today’s society might be considered, out of order, insensitive…ludicrous.

But clearly, this widow trusted this man of God and trusted the process. She did as told. She was not tight-fisted. Moreover, her obedience resulted in the barrel of meal not wasting and the crude of oil not failing during the entire three years of famine (v 14). Verse 15 says she “and her house did eat many days.” Wouldn’t our God do it??!

So much is wrapped up in this story:

1) God will provide in the most unconventional ways. You ever heard about birds bringing food daily? No going to the food store. Butler service!

You might think the school fees, gas to get to that interview for that job you so need, the grocery, the mortgage payment, the train ticket to go see your ailing grandmother, might come one way, but the beauty is not just when God shows up, but HOW he shows up. Expect the unexpected with God. Don’t box Him in!!! He is NOT man.

2) Despite recessions, despite increases in Value Added Tax (VAT), despite famine, GOD IS STILL GOD ALONE and will provide the entire time. It doesn’t matter what others are experiencing, if you remain obedient (this is key), if you remain faithful (also key), you shall not lack. “There is no want to those who fear Him” (Psalm 34: 9).

3) Even with your little…your only…your last, God is all sufficient. If you know without a doubt, He is instructing you to help someone in need, in spite of your own needs – do it. Sometimes God tests us with our little before handing us much.

Will you trust in the God of Elijah? Will you be obedient like the widow of Zarephath?

Growing in Christ,

Hadassah

Need Some Encouragement?

There is someone who needs an encouraging word at this very moment. Life has beaten you up quite badly. You feel weary. You are hurt, disappointed…quite frankly – you’re tired. At times, you have been at the brink of despair.

Each of us, at various points in life, have gone through painful situations. Someone after just a year or two of marriage, has had a spouse walk out. Another person has had a young child die of cancer. Someone is struggling financially. Yet, someone else has had to endure watching a dear relative making poor decisions which result in heartache.

Whatever your situation, as I told someone earlier today, push through, press on…do not give up. Galatians 6 v. 9 says, ” And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” And of course, only he who feels it knows it, but the reality is humans sometimes fail us. Situations present themselves that test your will power…your faith…your resilience. The vicissitudes of life might sometimes make you feel like you’re drowning or perhaps you are suffocating beneath the rubble. The situation might have you on the brink of collapse, but keep on keeping on. Hang on, even if just by a thread – HANG ON!

I encourage you to pray your way through. In fact, pray the Word. I remember a situation I went through about 15 years ago; it felt like a death. I was literally in mourning. I was so low that it affected me physically. Evenings were the saddest time for me. There was just something about watching the setting of the sun and lowering of its rays from my window that saddened me. Perhaps it was the approach of darkness and the quietness…stillness of the night that I preferred to not experience. I couldn’t wait for mornings; they signaled a new start…a new beginning…sunshine…another attempt to muster some strength.

The ONE text I came across that resonated with me at that time and gave me great comfort was Psalm 147 v. 3, “He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.” Even to this day, I could never forget how that ONE text was what I held on to. I repeated that in every prayer, reminding God of His promise. I clung to it with everything I had. I spoke it. I prayed it. And eventually it came to past. I encourage you to pray yourself through. Again, pray the Word. God’s Word is true.

Remember, God tells you in 1 Peter 5 v. 7 to “(Cast) all your care upon him; for he careth for you. He further encourages us through Philippians 4 verses 7 and 8 to, “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Yes, God is saying, not to worry. It’s easier said than done, but either we worry and carry the load or give Him the burden and trust the process that ALL – not some – things are working together for our good (Romans 8 v. 28). We have a choice. And yes, something good is going to come out of this situation for you. Believe.

I pray God’s peace over your life and your situation in the name of Jesus. Give it to Him. He wants to carry that burden. May you experience God’s peace today in the name of Jesus.

Growing in Christ,

Hadassah

Preparing to Receive!


You wouldn’t believe some of the things I have done in faith. There are some things, if I share, I would be labelled desperate or crazy! Nevertheless, I am of the firm belief in preparing for what I’ve prayed for. The Word says in Psalm 84 v 11 that God will not withhold any good thing from them that walk uprightly. I also once read that the highest form of faith is preparation.

In fact, I remember when my daughter was in her final semester of college and had to do independent study for a course because she was the only one requiring it at that time to graduate. We certainly had some road blocks including her application reportedly being lost at one point. However, like I told her, she was in that institution for too long! I said, “Dis ya last semester!” And I was serious!

In faith, I took out my old graduation rob that she was also to wear and I hung it in the front of the closet in an act of faith. I eyed that rob everyday as it hung front and centre outside the closet. I prayed in faith, taking the matter to the Lord with expectation that He would open the door. And with the help of the Lord, she got the independent study release aproved the FINAL day of registration. She literally ran onto the line, slipping in moments before the line was cut off. That May, she graduated and it was not luck! Thanks be to God!

I also had a dear friend of mine whom I was joining in prayer for a baby. I believe faith without works is dead, so what did I do? In faith, I went to the store and bought her a few baby items and had them wrapped. I told her to open it with her husband. They were both pleasantly surprised. It was simply an act of preparing for what we were praying for!

And no, God is no magician with some magic wand, but I believe in calling those things that be not as though they were (Romans 4 v 17) and walking by faith – not by sight (2 Corinthians 5 v 7).

You might ask, “What if God doesn’t grant the desire?” Well, ultimately He is sovereign and His will be done, but don’t let it be because you lacked the faith that He is more than able! Trust Him even when you can’t trace Him.

Growing in Christ,

Hadassah

The Faith of Chesea Taylor’s Mom

Photo credit: relevantmagazine.com

This is Chelsea Taylor. In this photo taken on Sunday past – just six days ago – she was lifting her hand and voice in praise and worship to the Lord, Almighty. The Hillsong worship leader fell ill shortly after exiting the stage of the church, headquartered in Sydney, Australia, and was rushed to the hospital, where she underwent a reported nine hours of brain surgery. She had an aneurysm.

Chelsea is still alive and we thank God! We pray that God would lift her off her sick bed and work a miracle. In fact, what is so amazing is Chelesa was out of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) by Tuesday, when it was expected she would be in there for three weeks! And on Thursday, she was able to venture out of her room and down the hall – even eat breakfast! LOOKA OUR GOD!!!! Hallelujah!

But it’s Chelsea’s mother’s faith that resonated with me. Her mom said:

“She walked into church Sunday morning in her white sneakers! I am taking them into her room today as A declaration of Faith that she is going to walk out of this hospital 100 percent healed in Jesus’ mighty name.”

Chelsea in her white sneakers.

Chelsea’s mother is putting faith to action. Faith without works is DEAD (James 2 v 26)! She is believing for her daughter’s recovery. “For we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5 v 7). It is my prayer that Chelsea would walk out of the hospital in these sneakers and eventually into that worship centre in them, to glorify God in the precious name of Jesus! May He raise her up that others would believe!

Take a listen to a sample of one of Hillsong’s beautiful worship songs, What a Beautiful Name. May Chelsea continue to call on that name!

Growing in Christ,

Hadassah