“Arise and eat.”
1 Kings 19:5
Elijah was a drama magnet. He never seemed to have just a “normal” day like the rest of the people around him. Just in the chapter before this simple verse, he lived through dramatic extremes that no other man had experienced. It was part of being “chosen” by God.
I have a dear friend born in the land of Israel in the year it became a nation (1948), who recounts the history of the Jewish people (God’s “Chosen People”) as well as their current history. As a result, he often says, “God! Can You please choose somebody else for a while!”
I think that Elijah may have had similar thoughts. He was at the end of his rope. He had nothing more to give….in fact he had sunk into a sense of hopelessness that made him want to die. He had isolated himself. He did not want to go on. With the dramatic backdrop of the miracles God had used Elijah to carry out, a death threat from a woman hit him so hard that he literally wanted to die.
But God had been with him. He was still with him. God’s heart toward His dear servant remained as patient and faithful as always, even though Elijah was not feeling it. In His great Compassion, God sent His angel to be with Elijah. No judgement. No quoting Torah verses. No condemnation regarding the hopeless condition of His dear Servant Elijah. Not even reminders of Elijah’s recent “mountain-top experience” with God.
“Get up and eat.” God’s Presence was there. Simply. Practically. Kindly. No shaming or blaming to His dear servant. No lecture. God simply laid out fresh, warm bread and water, right where he was.
May we think of God’s Kindness toward His servant Elijah when we have become so depleted that we have nothing else to give. May we see His Provision in those hopeless moments . . . the simple things of life . . . the bare necessities that He sets before us without fanfare nor shame. And may we receive from Him those simple, everyday provisions that He offers us, trusting that He knows what is ahead and today’s provision…from His Hand….will be all we will need to step into tomorrow.