Maybe you can relate. “I struggle with being human,” my friend said while standing in line at the Department of Motor Vehicles. Abbigail had to make three trips home for the correct documentation.
It took a total of six hours to finally convince the DMV that this petite middle-aged woman wasn’t a national threat.
Most of us can be positive when our circumstances are going according to plan. But our response to the DMV’s of life, reveal our humanness.
In James, we learn that the Old Testament prophet, Elijah, . . . was a human being, even as we are (James 5:7) NIV. God felt the need to remind us of this fact. He knows our tendency to put some biblical characters into the super saints category.
In 1 Kings 18, we find Elijah standing alone against the prophets of Baal. In a contest between the gods, our true God rains down fire from heaven. The false prophets fall prostrate before the Lord. Elijah orders them all to be slaughtered. Afterwards, the sky grows black and a torrential downpour begins.
Elijah’s spiritual victory was followed by the power of the Lord coming upon him. Energized by God, he sprinted ahead to Jezreel. During this time, the wicked queen, Jezebel, discovered Elijah killed all of her cronies. I’m sure she cussed up her own storm as she threatened his life.
The prophet was terrified. He ran.
Next, we find Elijah in the desert under a broom tree sulking, I have had enough, Lord . . . Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors (1 Kings 19:4).
We see Elijah’s humanness as he goes from the mountaintop of victory to the depths of desperation.
What I love about this account is the realness of Elijah.
In life, we can become overwhelmed, especially after a loss of any kind. That’s when we might take refuge under our own broom tree. Your broom tree might look different than mine. My personal favorite is isolation. Perhaps for you it’s one or more of the following: alcohol, sleeping too much, emotional eating, gambling, pornography, or shopping.
I’m encouraged that God didn’t try to give Elijah all the reasons why he shouldn’t feel sad. Instead, God let him sleep. He woke up to the aroma of freshly baked bread. God had instructed an angel to bake the discouraged prophet bread and provide a jug of water.
The angel of the Lord did this bake bread routine twice. God had Elijah eat, sleep, and eat again. This supernatural food strengthened him physically, spiritually and emotionally for the long journey ahead.
God doesn’t abandon us when are experiencing the weaknesses of being human.
He doesn’t shame us for feeling discouraged.
I have had my share of discouragement. If I were Abbigail stuck for six hours trying to renew my license would have propelled me into a bad attitude. To Abbigail’s credit, she accepted her humanness and was able to laugh about her marathon at the DMV.
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