Thursday, July 28, 2016

Rise Above My Pity Tree

O. T. #801  "Rise Above My Pity Tree"
July 28, 2016
1Kings 19-Part 3
So he got up...  1 Kings 19:8


"Get up and eat!" an angel touched Elijah and told him a second time while he was sleeping under the tree, his pitiful pity tree. "Eat some more or the journey ahead will be too much for you," was the angel's instruction. So Elijah did. Now the thing is, this food and drink gave him was enough to strength him to travel 40 days and 40 nights to Mount Sinai which about a 200 mile treck.

Jesus and I had a talk under my pity tree-mostly I listened. He clarified the issues that put me there, putting them in perspective. My instructions were to continue on, get up and eat from His banqueting table the food for my soul which He had prepared for me-His Word. His hand was held out to me. I took it and rose from my sitting in self pity under my juniper tree.

The preacher made the message clear and I had to choose. Well, I didn't want to be poor, blind, and naked spiritually like the church at Laodicea in Revelation 3. It was time to get real, a self-assessment. Certainly, I did not wish to be a lukewarm Christian, going through the motions. My desire was for Christ to live in me, to live the extraordinary life with Him.

Once again the most difficult challenge was issued to me one more time- in Matthew 16:24 Jesus said, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.

Can I be honest here? It has been the hardest thing for me to do in my lifetime, over and over to apply. There it was, I could quit all my ways of serving Jesus, give up all my responsibilities, and become a lukewarm pitiful pew warmer or rise up above the pain, disappointments, and struggles, forgive and be filled with the joy of Jesus.

Obviously, I am slowly rising up. It's a slow process for me-forgive this one, forgive that one, treat them as if the thing never happened-love them through Jesus. Folks, that was/is a giant glass of tea! That meant I had to deny my right to be hurt, upset, even angry at them, stop resenting them hurting me, die on that cross of self pity, give it to Jesus, and follow Him. After all, He did so for me. It was a higher calling, to rise above those issues.

So every time I see those people who hurt me, I have to make a conscious choice-forgive or not forgive, love or not love, treat them like Jesus does or not. Surely I will get passed this and it will become easier. Yep, experience has taught me that it will as time passes. I am an overcomer, as the song says. Don't quit! Don't give in! Be an overcomer!


The journey must have been difficult for Elijah, but I wonder if he was  walking and talking with Jesus as he went.

Verse 9a says he came to a cave, where he spent the night. The Lord asked Elijah what he was doing there.
Elijah stated his case in verse 10: I have zealously served the LORD God Almighty. But the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you, torn down your altars, and killed every one of your prophets. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me, too.

(Wait a minute, Elijah, you were told a hundred had been hid in  caves.)
Well, who hasn't felt all alone in serving? I am doing this and no one else cares if it gets done or not. No one else will help me. Forget it, I'll just quit, too.
They were trying to kill Elijah? As I recall, Jezebel was the one who issued the death threat. Did Elijah think her 400 prophets that were left were pursuing him? Or was it an excuse?

The Lord told Elijah to go out and stand before Him on the mountain. He did. Next time we will discuss what happened.


                              ...and let God handle those people.
                              ...and deny myself, take up my cross, and follow Jesus.
                              ...and be an overcomer.

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