‘“Go to the east and hide by Kerith Brook, near where it enters the Jordan River. Drink from the brook and eat what the ravens bring you, for I have commanded them to bring you food.” So Elijah did as the Lord told him and camped beside Kerith Brook, east of the Jordan. The ravens brought him bread and meat each morning and evening, and he drank from the brook. But after a while the brook dried up, for there was no rainfall anywhere in the land.’
1 Kings 17:3-7
Today is day two of WEIRD; as we dig into the life of the prophet Elijah, we’re also seeing a theme develop of how weird following God in obedience is compared to the popular opinion of the world. We’re also going to see even more so today that the way God works in our lives, it’s so WEIRD!!! Not weird in a bad way, just weird in a God way, the kind of weird that is so different from the dose of normal we see and live in daily in this world. We’re striving to live more in this weird way because normal in this world is everywhere and if you take a second to look around…..normal isn’t exactly working!!!!
Like I mentioned in day 1, I wanted to share with you the BIG, crazy awesome miracles that God brought through Elijah but I would be doing you an injustice if I gave you the delicious fresh baked cake without giving you the process of baking that was necessary for the awesome result.
Immediately after this big news Elijah shared from God about there being a drought in the land, God sends Elijah into hiding. For one, it shows that the people of the land, led by King Ahab, weren’t too happy for Elijah to share this so God is protecting him from harm. Secondly, God sends Elijah into the wilderness, a place where many great names and leaders in the Bible went such as Moses, David, and even Jesus!
Like any story, the BIG amazing things that take place just one chapter over in chapter 18 of 1 Kings, those things aren’t possible without the events that took place in chapter 17. It’s easy to see Elijah as this big name Bible hero but all Bible heroes are just as human as me and you. And all of these men and women have one BIG thing in common, the God they serve!!! It just so happens that same God is the God we have by our side in every moment of our lives too!
We see Elijah gets sent into the wilderness, why would God do that? Why would God allow us to go into places and positions of such harsh conditions? Isn’t it weird that such a good God that loves us so much would allow us to experience things like this???
Yeah, by every human eye that sees it, it’s super weird, but it’s God. What seems like on the surface a situation that looks crazy and impossible, God is doing something much bigger than we can even grasp.
The main quality we see from Elijah here is his obedience, he immediately follows God at His Word to tell the people of the incoming drought and then into the wilderness into hiding. This is the truth, sometimes God calls us into messy and crazy situations but through each moment His promise to protect us and provide for is always faithfully kept. There is so many things each day that God calls us to do that is far from normal in this world. Big things such as what Elijah is doing but also little small things that don’t seem like a big deal if we are disobedient, but at the end of the day there is no excuse for disobeying God. That’s easier said than done because so many days I put aside so many opportunities that God places in front of me to simply love somebody, reach out and care for someone, or just being there for someone.
What clutters our vision to do these things is how we get so wrapped up in the mindset of what everyone else is doing. Seeing people following God’s Word in obedience is far and few between these days, but with that becoming our “normal” surroundings, sometimes that makes it tough to live a weird life for God. We can easily get trapped in making decisions to be “normal” and just go with the crowd because that’s the easy thing to do. Fitting in is what it boils down to but in this life with the Lord, fitting in with the masses doesn’t really fit well into our relationship with Him. The weird thing to do is follow God, put everyone else’s opinions to the side and just step into this crazy awesome obedience. When they think we have lost our minds, we’ll never make it, we are not being smart or all the other things the world would have to chime in and tell us. God says otherwise.
God tells Elijah here that He has commanded the ravens to bring him food. WHAT??? How is that even possible? You see, there God goes again being weird. In our eyes along with the world around us, that’s impossible and crazy. But then we see what God has to say about the popular opinion. As Elijah steps obediently into what God has promised, God does what only God can do. God literally sends ravens day by day with food for Elijah!!!!
As we see God “commanding” the ravens we see a BIG view of who God is and what He’s capable of. God is in full control of every single thing on this earth. God gives us a promise, and always stays true to His Word, protecting us and providing for us in every moment. What this lesson boils down to in our lives is this. To be obedient to God’s Word and His Will, it takes a WHOLE LOT of TRUST!!! I’ve noticed for me personally, whether big things or little, my main problem with obedience is placing trust in myself and what I think is right. Or I place my trust in the popular opinion of the world around me, and fall to a normal life along with the rest of the world. Is it that crazy to think of what would happen if we trusted God, if we put our selves and what’s normal aside and just take a step into weird for a moment?!?
It’s here in these type of moments in our lives, when we follow God into the weird wilderness, the crazy and impossible circumstances that trust is built as we see God for who He truly is, our protector, provider and our God. Obedience stems from trusting that God is enough and taking those steps into what is far from normal in the world’s view, steps into weird. Doing what everybody says can’t be done, trusting God above all else, and just watching Him do what only He can do. These moments are crucial for Elijah here and for us to live this weird life God has for us, it’s in these moments where we realize that we are not enough and don’t have what it takes to get through, only God does. Gaining more and more knowledge and understanding in who God is and what He’s capable of, trust comes easier and in trust obedience follows. It may lead to living a weird life, but hey!!! That’s a good thing because normal sure ain’t cutting it!!!