How Has God Shown Up?
I read an article recently that said most animals have very poor short-term memories – many are in the range of a couple of minutes, with some having mere seconds before they forget what just happened.
We humans might also struggle with memory loss when it comes to what God has done for us. Have you ever had a mountain-top experience with the Lord only to find yourself in the deepest valley within hours or days? You’re not alone.
The Old Testament records a great number of times when God’s people forgot how He had showed up for them. From the very beginning, Adam and Eve conveniently forgot that God had told them they’d die if they ate from the forbidden tree (Genesis 3). The Israelites thought they’d been abandoned just days after Moses went up to Mt. Sinai to speak with God (Exodus 32), and in Revelation 2 Jesus speaks to the church of Ephesus about the forgetting of their first love of Christ.
One passage has always stood out to me as an example of how fast we can lose our spiritual bearings when tough times come. In 1 Kings 18, Elijah challenges 450 prophets of the false-god Baal to the ultimate throwdown. He gives these prophets every possible chance to call on their god to bring fire from heaven, and when nothing happens he drenches the altar of the True God in water and then prays. God literally consumes the entire thing (stones and all!) with an inferno from heaven. Elijah finishes by killing all the false prophets. It’s an epic showing of God’s force and one you’d think would be unforgettable.
But in the next chapter, which I imagine begins just days later, Elijah learns Jezebel is coming after him, seeking revenge at full throttle:
But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree; and he requested for himself that he might die, and said, “It is enough; now, O Lord, take my life, for I am not better than my fathers.” He lay down and slept under a juniper tree; and behold, there was an angel touching him, and he said to him, “Arise, eat.”
1 Kings 19:4-5 NASB
How quickly he’d forgotten the supremacy of the Almighty God! After witnessing an amazing, supernatural display of God’s power, Elijah is a broken, scared man, running for his life. But then God sends His angel to minister to him, encourage, and even feed him for the following 40 days. Elijah had nothing to be worried about; God was still in control as He’d always been.
Today, let’s spend a few minutes thinking upon the amazing things God has done in our lives.Each of us has at least a few instances we can point to and see how God showed up, either in grandeur or in the quietest moment, how His plan was far better than ours, and how He ministered to us in a time of dire personal need.Let’s never forget His goodness and love!If we abide in Him, we need not fear whatever the enemy has planned because our God is greater! Romans 8:38-39