Sunday, July 06, 2014

Does it Take a Whirlwind?

1 Kings 19
I have written about this chapter a lot. I'm not sure why I keep coming back to it, other than the fact that I want God to scream things out at me instead of me being quiet enough to listen.
Ok. Ouch.

I usually focus on the verses that talk about Elijah listening for God in the fire and whirlwind.
The context of it has somehow escaped me a little before tonight.

God was the one who told Elijah to head to the hills, and listen.

11-12 Then he was told, “Go, stand on the mountain at attention before God. God will pass by.”

God was already speaking to him. But Elijah was having a bit of a pity party. Now I can't fault him for this, if you read the things that he has gone though you will see it's not been an easy road.
But my point here is - he already HAD God's attention.  God was speaking TO him.

God pulls him aside, to this mountain, and then shows off some power. 

The passage continues: "A hurricane wind ripped through the mountains and shattered the rocks before God, but God wasn’t to be found in the wind; after the wind an earthquake, but God wasn’t in the earthquake; and after the earthquake fire, but God wasn’t in the fire; and after the fire a gentle and quiet whisper."

Hurricane force winds, rocks shattering, an earthquake, and a fire storm one after the other ravage the mountain where Elijah stands.

My friend Elijah, who I can completely relate to, waits for it all to pass and seems to think the point is that God didn't hear him. If you read carefully you'll see he repeats the exact same things to God on the mountain that he has just said to him in the cave.

Oh Elijah, I can SO relate. I think one of the reasons I keep circling this passage is because God is speaking but I'm still not listening.  And I really don't want to have to hike a mountain and have rocks shattered to finally "get it."

God, Help us to hear you right where we are. We are listening.