by Pastor Tim Burt
As I was reading God's Word this morning, I remembered that God has a sense of humor that reveals just how great and magnificent He is.
There was a time when God was moving in the earth, revealing Himself again to the children of Israel who had become backslidden. Just as people do today, they had, over time, been seduced into worldly ways and false gods. They had forgotten who God had raised them up to be.
A judgement had come upon the earth and there was a famine that had affected everyone—good or bad, including God’s Prophet Elijah. The difference for the good is, because they stay close to God, they are led by God to supernatural provision.
Elijah had been hanging out by a brook where there was water and where God was having ravens feed him—an amazing story. Eventually the brook dried up and God sent Elijah to his next place of provision. This is where God’s sense of humor comes in. God sends him to a widow woman who was in such a desperate place herself, that she and her son were about to starve to death. Seems like the logical place for God to send you to have your needs met doesn't it? NOT! Here is the story:
1 Kings 17:8-16 (NLT) Then the Lord said to Elijah, "Go and live in the village of Zarephath, near the city of Sidon. There is a widow there who will feed you. I have given her my instructions." So he went to Zarephath. As he arrived at the gates of the village, he saw a widow gathering sticks, and he asked her, "Would you please bring me a cup of water?" As she was going to get it, he called to her, "Bring me a bite of bread, too." But she said, "I swear by the Lord your God that I don't have a single piece of bread in the house. And I have only a handful of flour left in the jar and a little cooking oil in the bottom of the jug. I was just gathering a few sticks to cook this last meal, and then my son and I will die." But Elijah said to her, "Don't be afraid! Go ahead and cook that 'last meal,' but bake me a little loaf of bread first. Afterward there will still be enough food for you and your son. For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: There will always be plenty of flour and oil left in your containers until the time when the Lord sends rain and the crops grow again!" So she did as Elijah said, and she and Elijah and her son continued to eat from her supply of flour and oil for many days. For no matter how much they used, there was always enough left in the containers, just as the Lord had promised through Elijah.” This woman believed in the direction of the Lord coming through Elijah. She obeyed him and it changed her life, and fed Elijah too! Oh how magnificent are God's ways!
There was a season of time when our four children were very young, that we lived mostly on macaroni and cheese to keep from starving. We were a family of six and at that time, you could get three boxes of it for a dollar. As I said yesterday, we never missed giving the Lord our tithes and we always prayed, thanking Him for taking care of us and meeting our needs. I remember one morning Renee coming to me saying I am out of groceries and we have no money. We went into our living room, sat down and prayed thanking the Lord that He knew our situation and our faithfulness in putting Him first place in our life. We told Him we trusted Him knowing that He alone was our provider. I was working full time and working a side job but things were still tight. As we finished praying, the doorbell rang. Renee and I looked at each other. We weren't expecting anyone. There was a woman at the door saying that the Lord told her to go buy us groceries. Renee immediately broke out crying with joy! We hadn't told anyone about our situation. We knew she was sent by the Lord! These kinds and times of supernatural provisions happened in our life again and again.
God’s plan for each and every one of us will be different, but, He will direct us and help each of us! When we have faith in Him and trust Him, then He will direct our all of our paths—including the path to our provision. Know that and be refreshed in the promise of it daily!
Psalm 69:16 (NLT) “Answer my prayers, O Lord, for your unfailing love is wonderful. Turn and take care of me, for your mercy is so plentiful.”
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt