“And he asked that he might die, saying, ‘It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life, for I am no better than my fathers.’ And he lay down and slept under a broom tree. And behold, an angel touched him and said to him, ‘Arise and eat.’” (1 Kings 19:4b-5)
Elijah had good reason to prefer death to life. Hated, hunted, and doubtful, he figured that he was the last prophet of God in Israel. He felt as you and I may sometimes feel: alone, dispirited, and failed.
Yet then God granted him sleep, as God grants to all His beloved (Psalm 127:2), and the good angel came with good words: “Arise and eat.” God cared for His own, as a shepherd cares for His sheep. He comforted Elijah not only with physical nourishment but also with His own, merciful and divine fellowship.
Here is the God who greets you in Jesus Christ. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). “Take, eat. Take, drink.” With such tender words He nourishes and raises us up, too. Though we may feel sorry for ourselves, He has a journey for us to walk. Though we may mark ourselves for dead, He marks us for life. Come to Him; rest in His arms; eat and drink His Supper; then rise, and be on your way.
LET US PRAY: Lord, feed me. I’m hungry, and I’m not smart enough to know what food is best. Nourish me with Your bread of life, and send me on the way of life. Amen
Pastor Steven K. Gjerde