Today, I begin my 51-Day Retreat holding between August 27 and October 16 yearly. This year, I am publishing my discoveries each day here on my blog. You may subscribe to the blog to receive notifications in your email as it drops. Thank you for joining me on this journey
The man of God in I Kings 18–19 was one who had demonstrated power in unprecedented measure. He had called down fire earlier; he stopped the rain from falling; and by his words, the drought remained until prayed for rain to return. He demonstrated the excellency of God’s power by slaying all the prophets of Baal, after making a public ridicule of them. Most remarkably was case of the king, having seen and experienced these demonstrations of power, he humbled himself and decided to turn back to God.
While all these were on-going and there was victory for the cause of the Kingdom of God on all sides, this same man of God was threatened by Jezebel and he ran for his life. Wow! The man who called down fire from heaven, who sealed the heavens so that rain would not fall, now running for his life? Like Elijah the prophet, too many people, who represent God has demonstrated so much of the power of God in their life and ministry; the evidence is all over the place for all to see. However, until certain almost insignificant matter of life challenges their very core and they are overwhelmed by fear, it is not likely they would visit how they are fairing in their walk with God. Unfortunately, it is trauma that recalibrates most mighty men of God to re-examine their relationship with God. It should not be so.
Surely, it is possible to do exploits for God and not be in good standing with God. The work we do for God has the capacity to blindfold us from the quality of our walk with God. Do not confuse results with relationship; God weighs all people, nations and things; it will not be uncommon for great ministers of God to be found wanting in their walk with God. As it was with Elijah, every serving minister would be awakened to “arise and eat,” first to attend to his or her present and pressing need – sustenance (hunger and thirst); later to attend to his or her future needs, for the journey before him or her is usually too great for him or her. However, having received strength from God to appear in His presence, God’s response to anyone walking with Him, especially in times of trials, would be centered on the state of the heart. It may sound out-of-relevance but that would be the reason for the trials in the first place. “What are you doing here, . . .?” was God’s query to Elijah during his time. The response that followed pointed to the problem that made God permit his humiliation before Jezebel, though he once treaded on God’s high places and demonstrated the powers of God without fail.
How are you responding to God when trials and tribulations come? What is the state of your heart when it seems like God has disappointed you and you somewhat failed at something you used to be good at? Well, anyone, whose accomplishment is the response to God’s chastisement, is already at the end of his or her relevance with God. As it was with the prophet, attention would shift from such minister to the one coming after him or her because God Himself is the enemy of anyone who is proud. As you walk with the LORD, any unexplainable setback you experience is a spiritual alert for you to review your heart and walk with God in the light of His eternal purpose and His command that was given to you. Never get to a place where your response to God’s chastisement is self-approval, coming from your accomplishments and exploits done in Him.
The precipice to the mountain of the LORD’s house is still a peril to those who skirt around it wantonly. Do not get familiar or complacent with God. His purposes are eternal and you are merely an infinitesimal fraction of it. He is God and you are not! Elijah would have gone ahead to do greater things for the LORD but his ministry ended when he considered himself too important for God to ignore. Beware of yourself more than you are of the enemies of your life. There comes a point in your walk with God that the only one who can attack you is you. SELAH.