A Conversation with God

When we pray and hear our own emotions, we often identify the raging irrationality of what we are saying, and are surprised by the gentleness of God who listens, then draws even closer to us, because of our emotional honesty.
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He replied, “LORD God who rules over all, I’ve been very committed to you. The Israelites have turned their backs on your covenant. They have torn down your altars. They’ve put your prophets to death with their swords. I’m the only one left. And they are trying to kill me.”

1 Kings 19:10 NIRV

Preceding this moment, Elijah had gotten up, traveled 40 days and 40 nights, and here we find him in a cave at the mountain of God. After we get up, the temptation is to think we can mount a spiritual comeback, but we must first have a conversation with God.

The question from God which left Elijah pondering in the cave was, “what are you doing here?” God wasn’t going to let Elijah get back to work until he dealt with the deeper issues.

Elijah answered the question in an emotion-laden complaint, which could be paraphrased as, “I am the only committed follower you have, everyone else hates you…except me, and because of you, they are trying to kill me.”

Elijah was emotionally honest with God. However, there was only one problem – his feelings were exaggerating the facts.

He had been very committed to God, but his negative description of the Israelites ignored the repentance he had lead them to (as described in I Kings 18:39).

All the people saw it. Then they fell down flat with their faces toward the ground. They cried out, “The LORD is the one and only God! The LORD is the one and only God!” [40] Then Elijah commanded them, “Grab the prophets of Baal. Don’t let a single one of them get away!” So they grabbed them. Elijah had them brought down to the Kishon Valley. There he had them put to death.

1 Kings 18:39-40 NIrV

Fear had made Elijah forget this recent victory, and replace it with memories of failure from the past. His emotions were weakening his faith and clouding his reason. Instead of telling God about Jezebel’s threat, he said, “they are trying to kill me,” implying the whole nation was after him.

What God knew about Elijah, and knows about us, is that we must express our emotions before we will listen. Emotions don’t have to be true to be heard. In fact, when we pray and hear our own emotions, we often identify the raging irrationality of what we are saying, and are surprised by the gentleness of God who listens, then draws even closer to us, because of our emotional honesty.

What is our goal for today? It is to have an emotionally honest conversation with God, so he can help you ‘get your groove back.

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