Sunday, June 16, 2013

Week 25: Faith First

This week's Bible reading plan is as follows:
  • Sunday: 1 Kings 15:25-17:24, Acts 10:24-48, Psalm 134:1-3, Proverbs 17:9-11
  • Monday: 1 Kings 18:1-46, Acts 11:1-30, Psalm 135:1-21, Proverbs 17:12-13
  • Tuesday: 1 Kings 18:1-46, Acts 11:1-30, Psalm 135:1-21, Proverbs 17:12-13
  • Wednesday: 1 Kings 20:1-21:29, Acts 12:24-13:15, Psalm 137:1-9, Proverbs 17:16
  • Thursday: 1 Kings 22:1-53, Acts 13:16-41, Psalm 138:1-8, Proverbs 17:17-18
  • Friday: 2 Kings 1:1-2:25, Acts 13:42-14:7, Psalm 139:1-24, Proverbs 17:19-21
  • Saturday: 2 Kings 3:1-4:17, Acts 14:8-28, Psalm 140:1-13, Proverbs 17:22
Our S.O.A.P. this week is from the book of 1 Kings:


1 Kings 17:12-14
12 "As surely as the LORD your God lives," she replied, "I don't have any bread--only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it--and die." 13 Elijah said to her, "Don't be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son. 14 For this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: 'The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the LORD sends rain on the land.' "
Chapter 17 of 1 Kings is a remarkable testimony to God's faithfulness and provision in many ways. First, the LORD provides for Elijah by commanding ravens to supply food for him (verse 4). When the water of the Jordan river dries out after several years of drought, the LORD commands a non-Jewish woman, a widow from the town of Zarephath in Sidon, to supply food for Elijah. Next, the LORD miraculously provides for the widow, her son, and Elijah, by supplying flour and oil. At the end of the story, the LORD even provides life to the boy after he was terminally ill.

What is great about this story is that Elijah (and really God), meet the widow at her moment of despair. When he first meets her, she is in a desperate condition, see verse 12. She has just enough food left to make one more meal, after which she and her son are going to die from starvation. What happens next is remarkable. Elijah tests the woman's faith by asking her to first bring water and food to him, before making that last meal for herself and her son (verse 13). The woman goes home, and actually does what Elijah says (verse 15). She had faith! I think that is why the LORD selected her out of many... He met her in her worst condition, tested and affirmed her faith, and provide for her.

This story very much applies to our lives. Oftentimes we have to come to a desperate situation to find the LORD. The beautiful thing is that the LORD meets us at just the right time. He already went before Elijah and commanded this woman to supply food for him. The LORD goes before us and works in our lives and our situations. He wants us to depend on him, and oftentimes that means he has to break our pride and bring us to a point where all we can do is look up to him for help. The question is... do we have faith like this widow had?

Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for this example of this widow who showed faith in you. Help us to be like her. Thank you for meeting us in our darkest situations, and for your faithfulness and provision. Most of all, we thank you for providing your Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He is the bread that gives life eternal. Amen.

Have a wonderful week of reading. Happy Father's Day to all fathers out there!

In Christ,


1 comment:

  1. This hits right at home for me right now. I am reading Francis Chan's Crazy Love and it is convicting me page after page. I see a huge area of growth in prayer for myself in these words here too. Thank you for sharing, Dick.