Monday, June 7, 2010

Day 42 - When Faithfulness Feels Lonely

1 Kings 19:9-18

My church supports some missionaries that are in an area that can be dangerous and lonely. Because they are in an area where their lives are in danger for distributing Bibles, they are spread out and do not get to have a lot of Christian fellowship. One of the prayer requests that we have been given for them is to pray that they would feel encouraged as they work in an area with little Christian fellowship. Yet, even though they do not get to have fellowship with other Christians regularly, they are still faithful to the call and are distributing Bibles at an amazing rate. They are seeing people very hungry for the Word and are seeing lives changed as a result. There are so many missionaries in the world doing exactly the same thing as them, but I’m sure at times it feels as if they are the only ones. Elijah felt that way once; please turn to 1 Kings 19:9-18.

“I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too,” (verse 14b). Elijah found himself in a dangerous situation because he was faithful and obedient to God. Because his life was in danger, he felt isolated. So many prophets had been slain by Queen Jezebel and Elijah seemed to be the only one left. He was scared, tired, and lonely and had recently asked God to take his life. This was right after an incredible victory, but his life was threatened and he felt alone. God gave him a job and encouragement; God told him to anoint two future kings and Elisha who would partner with Elijah and succeed him as a prophet. God then told Elijah in verse 18, “Yet I reserve seven thousand in Israel – all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal and all whose mouths have not kissed him.” God reminded Elijah that he was not the only person left that honored God and he also supplied another prophet to work alongside him.

Sometimes it can feel that way for us. Maybe you work in a tough environment and you feel as if you are the only person that follows God. Perhaps your neighbors have isolated you because of your faith. Maybe you lost friends because you chose to obey God. Faithfulness is not always easy and it can cause us to feel isolated and alone. We are not alone! We have a loving Father that is always with us, and we are part of a large family world-wide. Romans 8:15 says, “For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship(or adoption). And by him we cry, ‘Abba Father.’” Calling God "Abba Father" is like we are calling Him "Daddy." We are adopted into the family and we are not alone. In fact, you are not the only person to ever go through things you have experienced.

Do you feel alone in your faithfulness? Where can you go to find fellowship and hope?

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