Thursday, January 12, 2017
Download MP3 (right click to save)
It was England's darkest hour. Each night the air raid sirens would wail their haunting warning that German bombers were again approaching London with their showers of death. And each night, Londoners would race to the city's bomb shelters, many of them underground in London's subway stations. When people surveyed the damage the next morning, of course the landscape had changed, with once familiar buildings now turned to rubble – and sometimes neighbors lost to the bombs.
In that long dark night of the soul, Prime Minister Winston Churchill was the inspiration, of course, that kept the spirit of the British alive. Each day, he was there picking his way through the rubble, directing emergency responses, and giving encouragement wherever he could. But where was Winston Churchill when the German bombs were raining down on the city over his head, trying to bomb England into submission? He was in his bunker in front of a table that was covered with a map of Europe, and with his nation under brutal German bombardment, Churchill was planning the invasion of Germany! Don't you love it?
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "When You're Being Bombarded."
Under bombardment; maybe that's where you are right now. And it's just about bombed the fight out of you, the hope, the faith, the dream, even the desire to go on. Maybe this is a good time to start planning an invasion.
That's what God's man Elijah needed in 1 Kings 19, our word for today from the Word of God. He had just been used by God on Mt. Carmel to defy 850 leaders of Israel's false religions. He was bold. He was on fire. He was un-intimidated, and he prayed down fire from heaven and the possible beginning of a national revival.
Then Queen Jezebel orders a 'hit' on Elijah. This was not a new thing. The king had been looking for Elijah for three years to kill him. But this time, verse 3 says, "Elijah was afraid and ran for his life." It seems like we're always vulnerable after a great victory, huh? And that Satan really tries to hit us hard when God's really been working in our life.
Well, Elijah goes into the desert and it says he "prayed that he might die." What?! This is a polar opposite of the fearless prophet of Mt. Carmel. "'I have had enough, Lord,' he said. 'Take my life.' Elijah went to sleep and all at once an angel touched him and said, 'Get up and eat.'" The prophet finds some hot bread prepared for him – sort of angel food cake. He eats and then he drinks the water that the angel brought and he lies down in his funk that he's still in. Then the angel comes again with another "Get up!" He goes to the mountain that the angel tells him to go to and he hides in a cave.
On Mt. Carmel, he'd been so full of God. Now in his prayer, he's full of himself, his disappointment, his self-pity. The Lord says, "Go out and stand...in the presence of the Lord." Finally, God says, "Go back the way you came." And He sends Elijah to do some of the most important work he's ever done. He's going to set up two kings for two kingdoms. He's going to launch a successor named Elisha.
Maybe you're doing an Elijah right now, succumbing to the bombardment. Well, don't doubt in the darkness what God told you in the light! His comeback plan for you is the same as it was for Elijah. Get up from the pit you've been in. When God found Elijah all down and defeated, He asked, "What are you doing here?" He's asking you the same question and He's telling you to get up and get moving.
Then God says, "Go out" and spend some time in the presence of the Lord, listen for His voice. And then "go back" to the work God gave you to do! It's time to step up like a spiritual Winston Churchill and refuse to surrender to defeat and despair. Fight back! Resist the devil! Start working on ways you can make your enemy sorry he ever touched you.
The bombs are falling, but you and Jesus need to be planning an invasion of the darkness. Because your enemy is not going to win this one, no matter how many bombs he drops, because you are going to push back the darkness!