Life is full of unexpected twists and turns. But I find when I rely on God's provision rather than on my own strength, the twists and turns take me right to the place I'm supposed to be.
1 Kings 19:7-8 (ESV)--And the angel of the Lord came again a second time and touched him and said, “Arise and eat, for the journey is too great for you.” And he arose and ate and drank, and went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb, the mount of God.
In 1 Kings 19, the prophet Elijah is running for his life after confronting King Ahab and his false prophets. He did what the Lord commanded, but is now facing adversity for taking a stand. He has run on foot for an entire day and is exhausted. He stops to rest and in despair asks God to take his life now instead of dying in the hands of his enemy.
But God does not grant Elijah's request.
Instead, while Elijah sleeps, God sends an angel to prepare a meal to feed Elijah. The angel wakes him up and tells him to eat. He does so then falls back to sleep still completely exhausted.
The angel wakes Elijah up a second time and says, "Arise and eat, for the journey is too great for you."
Elijah obeys and eats the food. And this heavenly food gives him energy to continue on his journey. Not just for another day. Not just until supper time. But the Bible says he lived off the strength of those two meals for forty days and forty nights until he reached a place where he was safe from harm.
I love the parallels this story has for our own lives today. Sometimes, we're running and working on our own adrenaline and strength but we burn out. Or, we feel we are on the path God wants us, doing what He's called us to do, only to hit adversity or hardship along the way. In both cases, we get discouraged. We wonder why we should continue on.
But God is not a God to leave us on our own. He supplies us with heavenly food to give us the spiritual and lasting strength we need. While it may not come in the physical form of food from an angel, He gives us tools and support along the journey. Here are some of the ways we can find this heavenly food:
God never promised life would be free of hardship. But He does promise to prepare us for whatever life may bring.
The turns and twists in my own journey have at times brought me so low I didn't think I would survive. I felt like the prophet Elijah did in this story. But when I used the provisions God offered, I received a strength I could have never gained on my own. It was a strength that carried me through until I was once again in a safe place.
God never promised life would be free of hardship. But He does promise to prepare us for whatever life may bring. "