God is Our Provider
WE DISCOVER IN 1 KINGS 17 that there was a famine in the land.
Often when I read stories like this, the idea that there was a famine in the land doesn’t necessarily evoke any kind of emotion within me. It is just a data point in the story. Admittedly, I tend to quickly move through the narrative without even pausing to wonder to myself, “What was it like to live through three years of famine?”
It was hard!
We discover in verse 7 that the famine was so severe that the water dried up. Can you even relate to that in a day and age when we think nothing of turning on the faucet to an endless supply of water? Add to that, we later meet a widow and her son who were down to their last morsel of bread. It was their plan to eat their final meal and then wait to starve to death.
But now that we are going through a crisis of our own, I am a little more inclined to pause in this passage and wonder, “What was it like to trust God in a crisis like this?” I need to trust God in a crisis like this!
We have our own set of uncertainties and challenges ahead of us. Aside from the efforts of trying to prevent this virus from spreading, there are very real economic concerns all around us. How will we make ends meet? How will we overcome the loss of a job? How will this impact my investments? How long will this last?
I am sure these are questions that Elijah and the widow asked during the three years of famine. How long will this last? How will we make ends meet?
The one overwhelming answer that arises from 1 Kings 17 is that God is our provider! He “airmailed” bread to Elijah through the “delivery service” of ravens. Then God sent Elijah to this unsuspecting widow and her son. And, he miraculously provided flour and oil every day for them for as long as the famine lasted.
I don’t know the answer to the “how” question? How will we make ends meet? But I do know that this story encourages me to remember that God is my provider. Jesus puts it this way in Matthew 6, “Therefore, do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’…your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and all these things shall be added to you.”
Now when I read that there was a famine in the land, my ears perk up because I want to learn how to trust God in my own uncertainty and challenge. What do I learn from this Old Testament story? I get to learn what it looks like to turn to God and trust him to provide. He will!
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