Yesterday’s blog, “Tired” focused on how the Lord desires to restore our soul when we are just plain worn out. Well, what about if you are in some sort of ministry? What if you are the beat down, worn out Pastor or his wife? You know that people are counting on you, but you are the one that can’t get out of bed. Well my friend, you are not alone. I have watched my dear husband rejoice over salvations, baptisms, and life change of all sorts on a Sunday and barely be able to get out of bed on Monday morning. This isn’t so abnormal, you know…
Consider Elijah, an amazing prophet of God. (1 Kings 19) Elijah felt attacked on all sides. After an amazing victory where God showed up for him and defeated the prophets of Baal, you’d think he would be on top of the world. But for many in ministry, it’s right after a major victory that deep fatigue and even depression can set in. Elijah was no different. The evil queen Jezebel had just threatened to take his life “by this time tomorrow so help me!”. He was running for his life in a desert. He was tired, hungry and had just plain had it. And he had a few bones to pick. When I read this passage I feel like I can see the sweat covering his weary face. I can hear the beating of his heart and the breathlessness in his voice as he arrives to this spot.
Ever felt this way? Do you ever feel like you’re serving in ministry and yet it’s not turning out how you thought? Had a major victory recently and now you can’t move? Feel unappreciated? Attacked? Tired? You aren’t alone. Now, look at what God did.
vs. 4 Finally, he came to a large bush and sat down in its shade. He begged the Lord, “I’ve had enough. Just let me die! I’m no better off than my ancestors.” 5 Then he lay down in the shade and fell asleep.
Suddenly an angel woke him up and said, “Get up and eat.” 6 Elijah looked around, and by his head was a jar of water and some baked bread. He sat up, ate and drank, then lay down and went back to sleep.
7 Soon the Lord’s angel woke him again and said, “Get up and eat, or else you’ll get too tired to travel.” 8 So Elijah sat up and ate and drank.
The food and water made him strong enough to walk forty more days.”
Don’t miss what God did here. It was so Fatherly. He recognized an immediate need and supplied for it. Elijah was hungry, so he gave him bread. He was thirsty, so he gave him water. He needed rest and so he gave him a large bush (in the desert) for shade and a nap.
Your heavenly Father also longs to meet your needs. If you’re tired, do you honestly just need to stop and sleep? I’ve had friends offer to come over so that I could just nap when one of my a new baby’s was born. What a blessing! Do you need to go on a walk and refresh? Take a day off? What’s your immediate need? God longs to meet it.
The story doesn’t stop there. God sustained Elijah for the next steps that were necessary: 40 more days of walking. Because, the journey wasn’t over. God still had a job for Elijah.
And if you woke up this morning, then God still has a job for you too! As a Christian, when you lose, we all lose. So rest up! We’ve still got work to do.
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30