www.peacemennonitechurch.netNote: This blog post was posted on August 13, 2012 but didn’t show up! Here it is, and a good blog post it is!
Praying with Elijah 081312
Elijah the Tishbite was an ancient Jewish prophet of legendary proportions. Like many of the prophets in the Hebrew Scriptures he confronted the bad behavior of the king and helped the poor. Elijah had to go into hiding from King Ahab and Queen Jezebel and found himself lodging in an upstairs room of a poor widow woman and her son. The widow and her son were on the verge of starvation and down to just enough provisions for their last meal. In the face of this stark reality the prophet instructed the widow to prepare a meal for the three of them and serve him first. Elijah promised that God would provide though the region was suffering from a severe drought. God did provide and “the jar of meal was not emptied, neither did the jug of oil fail.”
In the face of record-breaking heat and drought it is not easy to trust that there will be enough. I am glad for those who advocate and provide for the hungry and the poor. It is a faithful response to human need.
I pray for those who govern, that they will craft just and compassionate policies on behalf of those who struggle with poverty and hunger. I pray for those who confront injustice and all those who work for the common good. I pray that policy makers will wake up to the reality of human-caused global warming and how it affects those with the least resources to cope.
Jesus said, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”
Guest blogger Lee Lever is pastor of the Austin (Texas) Mennonite Church.
Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).
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We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net
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1 Kings 17:1-16
1Sing aloud to God our strength; shout for joy to the God of Jacob.
2Raise a song, sound the tambourine, the sweet lyre with the harp.
3Blow the trumpet at the new moon, at the full moon, on our festal day.
4For it is a statute for Israel, an ordinance of the God of Jacob.
5He made it a decree in Joseph, when he went out over the land of Egypt. I hear a voice I had not known:
6“I relieved your shoulder of the burden; your hands were freed from the basket.
7In distress you called, and I rescued you; I answered you in the secret place of thunder; I tested you at the waters of Meribah. Selah
8Hear, O my people, while I admonish you; O Israel, if you would but listen to me!
9There shall be no strange god among you; you shall not bow down to a foreign god.
10I am the Lord your God, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. Open your mouth wide and I will fill it.
11“But my people did not listen to my voice; Israel would not submit to me.
12So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts, to follow their own counsels.
13O that my people would listen to me, that Israel would walk in my ways!
14Then I would quickly subdue their enemies, and turn my hand against their foes.
15Those who hate the Lord would cringe before him, and their doom would last forever.
16I would feed you with the finest of the wheat, and with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.”
1 Kings 17:1-16
17Now Elijah the Tishbite, of Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, “As the Lord the God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, there shall be neither dew nor rain these years, except by my word.” 2The word of the Lord came to him, saying, 3“Go from here and turn eastward, and hide yourself by the Wadi Cherith, which is east of the Jordan. 4You shall drink from the wadi, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there.” 5So he went and did according to the word of the Lord; he went and lived by the Wadi Cherith, which is east of the Jordan. 6The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning, and bread and meat in the evening; and he drank from the wadi. 7But after a while the wadi dried up, because there was no rain in the land.
8Then the word of the Lord came to him, saying, 9“Go now to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and live there; for I have commanded a widow there to feed you.” 10So he set out and went to Zarephath. When he came to the gate of the town, a widow was there gathering sticks; he called to her and said, “Bring me a little water in a vessel, so that I may drink.” 11As she was going to bring it, he called to her and said, “Bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.” 12But she said, “As the Lord your God lives, I have nothing baked, only a handful of meal in a jar, and a little oil in a jug; I am now gathering a couple of sticks, so that I may go home and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die.” 13Elijah said to her, “Do not be afraid; go and do as you have said; but first make me a little cake of it and bring it to me, and afterwards make something for yourself and your son. 14For thus says the Lord the God of Israel: The jar of meal will not be emptied and the jug of oil will not fail until the day that the Lord sends rain on the earth.” 15She went and did as Elijah said, so that she as well as he and her household ate for many days. 16The jar of meal was not emptied, neither did the jug of oil fail, according to the word of the Lord that he spoke by Elijah.
5Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, 2and live in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
3But fornication and impurity of any kind, or greed, must not even be mentioned among you, as is proper among saints. 4Entirely out of place is obscene, silly, and vulgar talk; but instead, let there be thanksgiving. 5Be sure of this, that no fornicator or impure person, or one who is greedy (that is, an idolater), has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. 6Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes on those who are disobedient. 7Therefore do not be associated with them. 8For once you were darkness, but now in the Lord you are light. Live as children of light— 9for the fruit of the light is found in all that is good and right and true. 10Try to find out what is pleasing to the Lord. 11Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. 12For it is shameful even to mention what such people do secretly; 13but everything exposed by the light becomes visible, 14for everything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says, “Sleeper, awake! Rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”
The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
- “Behold, I will send you Elijah the pro (haroldcameron.wordpress.com)
- 1 Kings Chapter 17 (pofw.wordpress.com)
- The Sinning Servant: You? Me? Yes! (thecounselingmoment.wordpress.com)
- “Praying Like Crazy” (tommyham.me)