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

The Exceeding Abundantly God

I am a firm believer that God puts people along our journey to help manifest his plan for us.

One example is found in 2 Kings 4 v 1 – 7 with the widow and her oil. Here was a woman who found herself in a precarious situation. She was not only a widow, but a widow in debt, having incurred her husband’s bills. To exacerbate this challenging situation was the fact that as payback, the creditor was threatening to make her two sons slaves! No doubt, she was at her wit’s end. A woman in mourning, having to worry about the bills and simultaneously trying to save her sons. Mounting problems!

Clearly, this widow believed in the prophets and their connection to the Almighty God; therefore she approached Elisha for help. Elisha asked her what she had in her house. She revealed that all she possessed was a pot of oil. The cupboards were bare. Can you imagine bare cupboards? Not because you are just moving in or out, but bare cupboards because you have nothing to put in them.

Elisha instructed the widow to borrow vessels from all her neighbours – plenty vessels. I believe not a neighbour refused het request. The reality is God would position that harsh boss, that selfish neighbour, that scrooge-of-a-relative or even your most agressive enemy to fall in line to bless you at the right time!

Further, what I love is she was obedient. Trust and obey! She did as told by putting any pride aside, going door to door, asking for what she needed, then shutting her own door behind her and her sons, before pouring oil into all the vessels…until the last was filled. There goes my exceeding, abundantly God! It was nothing short of a miracle! Don’t underestimate God.

This woman was able to pay off her husband’s debt and use the remaining proceeds to live comfortably. From what I believe was a small pot of oil to numerous barrels of oil, God gave her MORE THAN ENOUGH!

Growing in Christ,

Hadassah

Finish the Job!

Even I surprised myself two nights ago. I was scrubbing the tiles in the restroom when electricity plunged me into darkness.

This was no surprise as in the past few months, this has been happening several times a week, multiple times a day (I shall not speak of the woes of the local electricity company). Howevever, what was a surprise was my decision to keep cleaning. I got a lamp and continued to scrub the tiles, by way of a dim light.

Of course having better lighting conditions would have been favourable, but I figured with the surge in energy I was feeling, ‘Hey, why not finish the job?!’

I’m here today to tell you finish the job! I remember when I got pregnant in college, I took one semester off, had my baby and six weeks after the birth, I was back in the classroom taking two summer courses. I didn’t even wait for the fall semester. That was too far. I had a degree to finish and a career to start. Not finising was NOT a consideration! That was 26 years ago. A year-and-a-half later, I completed my first degree.

Circumstances might have gotten in your way. Things are looking dark. You need money to finish college, you need money to finish that house, you need help finishing that project, you might not want to have that baby. You are thinking of opting out of your marriage. You have undoubtedly experienced some road blocks, there are some ditches you have had to climb out…you had to ride some treacherous seas on a rickety boat that would seemingly capsize on the way to the other side. But guess what? Press on…push through…don’t give up. Finish…and finish strong!

Remember, God has His eyes upon you. He cares about every iota of your life. He wants you to trust and obey Him. He wants you to come to Him and and if you already know Him, He wants to strengthen that relationship with you. “…greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.” 1 John 4 v 4

With God, you can finish strong naturally AND spitlritually – despite the dark times.

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