Provision in dry times!
Scripture reading for April 8th: 1st Kings 17-19
In 1975, our family went through a drought on the farm. It rained early in the year, but then quit after the crops were in. June and July had almost no rain and the corn grew and tasseled, but did not produce silks. Ears formed but no kernels were on the cobs. It looked very bleak for feeding our animals and paying the bills. The soybeans were shorter than usual, but it rained in August when they were blooming and they produced a good crop. God provided for us even in the dry year.
Elijah announced to King Ahab that no rain or dew would fall from the sky except at his word. (1st Kings 17: 1) He then left the area following the instructions of the Lord. God promised provision to Elijah. He commanded ravens to feed him by the brook in the Kerith Ravine. After a few rainless weeks, the brook dried up and God sent Elijah to a widow’s house in Zarephath. It would have been ideal to have a rich widow but this widow was so poor that she was gathering sticks to cook her son a last meal from a nearly empty jar of flour and oil. Elijah asked her to bring him a little water and a piece of bread. He encouraged her not to fear, that God would provide for her until the rains came again. She obeyed and God provided meals for nearly three years from that empty flour bin and oil jar!
The times we live in are dry in many ways. Our economy is weak and many are laid off from jobs and can’t find work. Provision is often very low. In times like this, we must listen to the Word of the Lord! It is imperative that each person hears the instructions God has for them. Elijah was cared for because he obeyed the Lord. The widow was taken care of during the drought because she took care of the prophet. Dry times need not be a problem for those who honor the Lord first and listen to His instructions!