A God who cares for us

Godfrey from in Harmonie invites us to reflect on some very relevant issues.

Research shows that more and more people are struggling with burnout, as well as issues related to depression, compared to a few years ago. This is due to a number of factors of how the world has shifted during the pandemic. I want to invite you to look at a story of a man who found himself in a very difficult place. A man who was burdened, who was crippled with fear, who had to run for his life. He was in such a dark place that he thought the only way to get out of his difficult circumstances was to die. As the story continues, we see the precious way God ministers to him through various ways. This gives us hope, to know that regardless of how difficult our circumstances are, regardless of what we might be experiencing, God is able to reach us and to deliver us.

“Now Ahab told Jezebel everything Elijah had done and how he had killed all the prophets with the sword. So Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah to say, “May the gods deal with me, be it ever so severely, if by this time tomorrow I do not make your life like that of one of them.” Elijah was afraid and ran for his life. When he came to Beersheba in Judah, he left his servant there, while he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness. He came to a broom bush, sat down under it and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough, LORD,” he said. “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.” Then he lay down under the bush and fell asleep. All at once an angel touched him and said, “Get up and eat.” He looked around, and there by his head was some bread baked over hot coals, and a jar of water. He ate and drank and then lay down again. The angel of the LORD came back a second time and touched him and said, “Get up and eat, for the journey is too much for you.” So he got up and ate and drank. Strengthened by that food, he traveled forty days and forty nights until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God.” – 1 Kings 19:1-8 NIV

The different themes we see in this piece of scripture are:

  1. The challenges and stress Elijah faced (v1-3)
  2. The burnout and depression (v4)
  3. Practical ministry to Elijah through food, rest and nourishment (5-8)
  4. Elijah regaining his strength (v8)

I want to invite you to take a few minutes to reflect on the above-mentioned scripture and reflect on the questions that follow:

H O W  T O  P R A C T I C E  L E C T I O  D I V I N A

  1. R E A D - Read this passage through slowly several times. If possible, read it out loud.
  2. R E F L E C T - Reflect upon the words being read. Listen carefully. Is there one word or phrase which stands out to you? Focus on the words. Repeat them. Allow God to speak to you.
  3. R E S P O N D - Respond in prayer to God. Tell Him what you think about what you’ve read. Tell Him how it makes you feel. Tell Him what comforts you and what challenges you. Ask for His help to live out the truths you’ve uncovered.
  4. R E S T - Stop. Be still. Stop talking, stop asking and rest. Spend some time in silence sitting with God. Invite the Holy Spirit and allow Him to transform you from within.

Reflect further on these questions:

  • “How is it with you soul?”
  • What tensions are you currently experiencing?
  • What do you think is the cause of these tensions?
  • How can you open yourself up for God to minister to you, just like He did with Elijah?