Hovering over the story of Elijah’s post-Carmel blues. After seeing the LORD’s great victory over the forces of hell on the mount, he returns to the valley and the murderous threats of Jezebel. The battle had been won, but the war was far from over. And the Spirit makes sure we know that Elijah “was afraid, and he arose and ran for his life” (1Ki. 19:3). Not only was he afraid but he was depressed, so much so that “he asked that he might die” (19:4). “It is enough,” says the weary prophet. I’m done. Let’s go home.
And while there’s a lot to chew on as to how the LORD ministers to His beat-up servant, the “money” phrase for me this morning is but seven words. Seven words that I think I would do well to remember.
And the angel of the LORD came again a second time and touched him and said, “Arise and eat, for the journey is too great for you.”
(1Kings 19:7 ESV)
The journey is too great for you.
The journey. The path. What would be encountered. How long it would take. Regardless of the victories along the way, without God’s enabling provision, the journey is too great for you.
Even for those who consider themselves self-made men, or self-made women, without God’s common grace and basic provisions for life, they’d never be able to even think they’re making the trip on their own.
What a blessing to know the journey’s too great. How needful to know that apart from Jesus we can do nothing (Jn. 15:5).
To receive His provision. To hear His voice in the “thin silence” (19:12). Because of our inability to go it alone, to know daily encounters of the divine kind as we abide in Him. All are benefits of knowing — and embracing — that the journey is too great.
Too great? Praise God! For it’s in our weakness that His power is experientially known (2Cor. 12:9)?
But it is but a journey, it is not forever. There’s a beginning and then there’s the destination. We’ll be home. Though the path has been long, though often hard, we’ll look back and say, “It was worth it all.” These present sufferings not worth comparing to the glory that lies ahead (Rom. 8:18). Whatever we encounter, eventually to be regarded as but “light momentary afflictions” having given way to “an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison” (2Cor. 4:17). No eye having seen, no ear having heard, no heart having imagined “what God has prepared for those who love Him” (1Cor. 2:9). Yup, it’s gonna be worth it all!
Through many dangers, toils and snares,
I have already come;
‘Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far,
And grace will lead me home. (Amazing Grace, John Newton)
The journey IS too great for us. But grace WILL lead us home.
Praise Him for such grace.
To God be the glory.