Here is Elijah in the cave at Horeb, the mountain of God… afraid, tired, directionless and alone. On the run from Jezebel, he was now at the mountain where Moses had witnessed the burning bush and perhaps this cave was the ‘cleft of the rock’ where the Lord’s Glory had passed by. A place of refuge and respite physically, but spiritually he was low… yet there is no escaping the presence of God and he seeks Elijah out. Elijah saw himself broken, but God saw the potential in him… prepared to be built up again.
Elijah had heard God speaking before, but this time it was different. As he heard that gentle voice, he covered his face (a mark of respect, as Europeans would uncover the head) and stepped up to listen. Not necessarily a voice readily attributable to the almighty God, yet it was this that he recognised as signifying God’s presence.
It’s a reminder to us of God’s unique involvement in our lives and his willingness to meet us where we’re at. It can be difficult to discern his voice, but I’d like to share a blog for encouragement:
‘Instead of waiting on a word from the Lord before you do something, wait on a word from the Lord before you take a break or do nothing. It’s not about being the best, but doing the best with what God has given you. Try out something and let God steer you from there.’
We are to step out in faith, directed by him of course, but we shouldn’t expect a big booming voice. God is most often revealed in the ordinary and the everyday experience, in creation and relationships…in a voice that is barely audible except to the most patient and still.
What had gone before was preparing Elijah for what was to come… as it is with us.
Read about Elijah’s encounter with God in 1 Kings 19:9–18