by Pastor Tim Burt
As I was reading God’s Word, 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. The Israelites, were backslidden. Just as some Christians do today, they’d been seduced into worldly ways and false gods. They had forgotten who God commanded them to be—His children and a light to the world.
Consequently, 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 was, those who stayed close to God experienced 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. I was the breadwinner as my wife stayed home with the children. The income from my job fell short of paying all our bills after our fourth child. Despite this, 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 we still fell short. 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 provision happened in our life again and again.
God is not a genie! He’s not someone you run to only when you’re in crisis. God is our Heavenly Father. He loves and desires to lead us, shape us, and transform our life into a blessing so that we can become a blessing to others. He’s our provider. When we look to Him, then no matter what difficult place our life is presently in—He’s with those who have faith in His love, grace, and help.
God’s plan and how He works in each of our lives will be different, but, He will direct and help each of us! When we have faith in Him and trust Him, then He will direct our path—including the path to our provision. Dwell on the circumstances that you can’t change and you’ll give up and backslide from God. Stay close to God and dwell on His love and promises, and worship Him for who He is, and you’ll experience supernatural provision—and like He did for Elijah, sometimes in the funniest and most unusual ways!
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
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