Jones: Help for your time of need
By Lynn Jones
There was once a hit Broadway musical that had a striking name. The name of the musical was, “Stop the World, I Want to Get Off.”
Do you ever feel that way? Are there times when it seems that you simply cannot go on?
If so, you are not the only one. In fact, one of the greatest religious leaders who appears in the Bible felt the same way on one occasion. His name was Elijah, and the story of his hurt and healing is recorded in 1 Kings 19:9-18.
The Lord came to him to help. He always does. When you hurt, He cares for you and wants to ease your pain.
Here’s what He did for Elijah. First, He listened to him. He let him pour out all his pain and sense of isolation. When Elijah was through with his pity party, the Lord stepped in to show him some things that would help him.
The Lord told him to get up, leave the cave, and get back to work. The Lord even gave him a list of things to do (vv. 15-16). Reduced to one short sentence, God’s advice to Elijah was, “Get busy.”
If you sit down and brood over your problems, you will hatch despair. Getting up and getting busy helping others is the best way to get your mind off your own problems.
Not only did the Lord give Elijah a list of things to do, He also reminded him that things were not as bleak as he thought. Elijah had felt that he was the only one who still believed in God, but that there were 7,000 others in Israel who were true believers (v. 18). Here was a circle of faith that could minister to him, support him, and stand with him during this time.
My 58 years of service as a minister have taught me a lot about the church. It is not a perfect institution, but it has a lot of people who care about others and who minister to them during their times of need. You are not alone. Plant your life in a fellowship of love and faith.
The thing that made the greatest impact on the life of Elijah was a fresh experience of the power and presence of God. The Lord demonstrated His mighty power in a powerful wind, earthquake, and fire. After that was over, the Lord spoke to him in a still, small voice. Elijah heard that voice, got up, and went back to Israel for some of his greatest years of ministry.
Don’t give up. Get up and get busy. Remember there are people who care about you, and there is a mighty God of power who is still on His throne! When you are hurting, He will help. Don’t try to do it yourself. Trust Him for it!
Lynn Jones is a retired pastor who lives in Oxford. He does supply preaching for churches in his area and often serves as an interim pastor. Jones is also an author, has written two books and writes a weekly newspaper column. He may be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org.