Monday, June 6, 2011


When God told Elijah to stay with the widow and her son, God provided the food they needed during the famine. God was performing daily miracles with the jar of flour and the jug of oil. But just when everything seemed to be going the widow’s way, tragedy strikes. Her son dies, the boy whom God was keeping alive with the miracle of food everyday dies.

You place your trust in God who provides for you, but then somewhere along the way you’re blindsided by tragedy, some unexpected loss. How do we trust God through the tragedy and come to know His power, even during those difficult times? We must make some choices.


Do you ever think that because you’ve served God that He owes you? Maybe you think that if you live right you’ll be exempt from problems. The truth is that the obedient are not exempt from troubles and tests. Accepting this truth will keep us from making wrong decisions that would cause us injury. It also guards us from the erroneous thinking that it doesn’t pay to do right, or that troubles always indicate sin in our lives. We can be enjoying God’s miracles everyday and still not have our heart right with Him. In tragedy we have the opportunity to confront who we are and where we are in relation to God.


When we see tragedy from a temporary humanistic standpoint it’s easy to get bitter.
Then I realized that my heart was bitter, and I was all torn up inside. Psa. 73:21 (NLT)

Bitterness will only eat away at you. It does nothing good for you. Instead it tears you down and tears your insides into pieces. The good news is that we don’t have to let bitterness have its way.


“Give me your son,” Elijah replied. He took him from her arms, carried him to the upper room where he was staying, and laid him on his bed. 1 Kings 17:19

The widow chose to give her son to Elijah. In doing so she took a step of faith because she was really taking a step to place her faith in God. She took a step to grow in faith. God prepared the widow to give up her son by first giving up her food. She learned from giving up her food first to Elijah that God could provide when she trusts Him. Now she must trust Him with the thing she cares more about than anything else in her whole world.

Before David faced Goliath, God prepared him by defeating the lion and the bear that attacked his flock.

Take the small steps of faith because God is growing your faith. We all face loss and tragedy, but when we’ve been prepared by the Lord because we’ve taken steps of faith to grow – then we will be prepared. When we see through the eyes of faith we know our God is bigger than our problems, even bigger than something as devastating and as final as death.


“Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?” In all this, Job did not sin in what he said. Job 2:10

Job recognized that God also allows pain into our lives. And it’s the opportunity to choose to pray to Him and learn to trust He knows what He’s doing, even though we don’t like it or we don’t understand it or we’re upset about it. This is our journey of spiritual growth, step by step, gradually growing our faith in the Infinitely Wise, All-Knowing, Almighty, Merciful, Loving God.

When we pray according to God’s will, it results in God’s action.
This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him. 1 John 5:14-15


Elijah picked up the child and carried him down from the room into the house. He gave him to his mother and said, “Look, your son is alive!” Then the woman said to Elijah, “Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the LORD from your mouth is the truth.” 1 Kings 17:23-24

How is it that the very same God who provides enough oil and flour everyday to keep the widow and her son alive, one day allows her son to die? The upside is that her son’s death provided the opportunity for her to experience the power of God to a greater degree. It brought her to salvation in the Lord. And that’s the life to celebrate.

When tragedy strikes, it’s not the end. It’s part of the journey to trusting God more. God wants you to know He can be trusted through the tough times. It’s our chance to grow a little more in our faith in Him. The beauty of it is that He gives us “real life” through it and “lasting life” through death into an eternity spent in Heaven that will cause all of our troubles and tragedies to pale in comparison.