Blessings Out of Blastings
“Surely, Lord, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield” (Psalm 5:12). There is a cycle often seen in the lives of God’s people. Just as the brook dried up at the Kerith Ravine and ended that tranquil time, the season of plenty at Zarephath came to an abrupt end for Elijah. Tragically, the widow’s son died, provoking her anger toward God and Elijah (see 1 Kings 17:17-24). The cycle of blessing followed by a blasting is not unusual for God’s people. Often a great triumph is accompanied by a great trial. I experienced this in 1987 when we established our church. God blessed us in every way a church can be blessed. Twenty-eight people attended the first meeting in a hotel room; the number increased to sixty the next week, and devoted believers continued to pour in. I was meeting with people morning, noon, and night, running to keep up with the phenomenal growth. But in 1989, I became seriously ill with double pneumonia. All I could do was lie on my back. God was hiding me as He did Elijah and putting me in a place to be quiet and listen. He taught me I could only minister to others if I would first minister to Him. He taught me I could do nothing in my own strength but everything in His. God will bring blessings out of the blastings every time if we will listen to His voice. Prayer: God, thank You for the reminder today that You have blessings for me even during difficult times. Help me to look for the blessings today. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.