“Go through the land to all of the springs of water and to all the valleys. Perhaps we may find grass and save the horse and mules…” 1Kings 18:5
What’s up with the rain?
Elijah and Ahab had an interesting relationship. Ahab was the king, he was a bad king who led the people away from worshipping God and embraced the worship of Baal but he always seemed to do whatever Elijah asked. Elijah walked up to Ahab in 1 Kings 17:1 and said, “As the LORD the God of Israel lives there shall be neither dew, nor rain these years except by my word.”
Now I had mentioned in an earlier post, that rain was a big deal because it was in itself calling us from independence to God-dependence. But there was more to this than that. Baal was the rain god.
Essentially, Elijah was saying, “Okay Mr. rain god worshipper guy, I’m turning off the water, talk to your little rain god about it and let’s see how that works.” Now chapter 17 lasts about 2 years. Elijah at the brook and then with the widow and her son and then in chapter 18, they are in the 3rd year of drought. The brook had dried up, the lady and her son were facing starvation and now the king is making contingency plans.
Funny that in 3 years, he doesn’t think, “you know Elijah might be a pain, but maybe he’s right. I need to repent.” Nope, 3 years of drought and he’s still trying to hold on. How’s that baal worship working out? How’s that stubborn independence working out for us?
On a weird side note, related to clinging desperately to our sin and our junk…I often think about villains in some of these epic stories. Saruman, for example, in Lord of the Rings is creating this world full of awful disgusting creatures with very little redemptive value. What’s the attraction here? Or how about Darth Vader and all of the storm troopers – what exactly are they fighting to preserve?
What does God have to do to get our attention? How often do we avoid the voice of the Lord, knowing what we need to change but stubbornly holding on to our independence. Are you feeling a little dry? Maybe it’s time to stop and consider if the Lord might be trying to get through to you. Consider David’s prayer in Psalm 139, “Search me O Lord and know my heart. Try me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any wicked way in me and lead me in the everlasting way.”