My husband is a private pilot who flies single engine planes. This has been a love of his since he was a teenager. He is so skillful and smooth as he moves through the air in such a marvelous machine. I am learning aviation skills from him. When I handle the yoke of the plane, my fear of heights takes over. I feel precariously perched on the head of a pin ready to tumble down at any moment, even though he is telling me everything I need to simply keep the plane in a level flight path. My fear of heights takes over. When he is at the controls, I feel like we are gracefully suspended by a heavenly cable as we glide through the air. I am grateful there are controls on both sides of the plane! My skillful hubby could take the controls when I became overwhelmed. Why the difference? Skill and perspective.
In I Kings 18:20-46, we read that Elijah had a show-down with the prophets of Baal, a group of bad boys who thought they were something special. Their power came from nothing instead of the Almighty God, Elijah's sole source of power. They did everything they could think of to get the rain to come down. A drought was threatening Israel's existence. Elijah watched this spectacle with great humor, poking fun at them.Then God showed up.
Elijah set up an altar and a sacrifice. He had the wood and the pieces of a bull drenched with water three times. The trench around the altar filled with water as well. When it was time for the evening sacrifice, Elijah called on the Lord to burn the sacrifice so the people of Israel would know the Lord is God. The fire came down from heaven, burning up the sacrifice, the altar, and the water in the trench. The prophets of Baal lost--their lives, that is. The only One with true power is God.
When Ahab and Jezebel heard about what Elijah did, they sent out word that Elijah must die (1 Kings 19:1-17). This prophet of God ran for his life. He was tired. Out of fear, he ran. Elijah found a broom tree for shade in a remote place. While sitting under it he asked God to take his life. It would be better for God to kill him than to die at the hands of evil people. God sent an angel to minister to Elijah's needs. The Elijah went on a 40 day, 40 night journey to Mount Horeb as God instructed. He needed to suspend his animation for a while.
God commanded Elijah to step inside a cave on the side of the mountain. God demonstrated his power passing by the cave opening. After a strong wind, an earthquake,followed by fire, God spoke in a still, small voice. The voice of God asked, "What are you doing here, Elijah?" Elijah needed to know that God was there for him. His power to deal with the frightening situation was enough for Elijah. God told him to go back with a list of duties to perform. God would take care of the details.
Sometimes we do well with what God tells us to do. Then when the going gets rocky, we get scared. In those times, we need to suspend our animation. As my husband could take the controls to maneuver the plane through the wind currents, even more so, God could work miracles for His exhausted, overwhelmed servant. The Lord can skillfully take hold of whatever overwhelms us. Take time to rest in the Lord. He will take care of you and help you get focus again on the issue. It is His power works through us, it is not our own. He renews our strength for the tasks He has for us, skillfully accomplishing His work through us. Don't give up!