1 Kings 19:4 “He came to a broom tree, sat down under it and prayed that he might die. ‘I have had enough, Lord,’ he said. ‘Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.’”
Ever have one of those “un-days?” You feel un-loved, un-productive, un-inspired, un-necessary. Every good you hope for—negated by a two-letter prefix. Before you know it, you find yourself wading into the gloomy swamp of dejection. That seems to be what happened to Elijah.
He had just triumphed over the prophets of Baal. The brilliant display of God’s power working through him had demonstrated to the wavering nation that God possessed more power than anything the servants of Baal could muster. Elijah’s faithful obedience had brought results. The people “fell prostrate and cried, ‘The Lord—he is God! The Lord—he is God’” (1 Kings 19:39). Yet his apparent “success” was short-lived. Queen Jezebel vowed to kill him and he ran for his life. It wasn’t a victory lap!
The danger with despondency is that it distorts the truth. Elijah complained to the Lord that in spite of his zealousness, his life’s work had essentially been a bust. Although he had just witnessed the people’s repentance, he allowed Jezebel’s threat to negate the very answer to his prayers. He believed that of all the prophets in Israel, he was the only one left who remained true to God. But he was wrong. Seven thousand other Israelites had refused to worship Baal.
We all face discouragement. If we want to avoid a free-fall into despair it is essential not to feed our weary souls with the bread of lies. When you are down, listen to what you tell yourself. Are your thoughts inconsistent with what you have known about God’s faithfulness in the past? Do they fail to line up with the truth revealed in Scripture? Is your mindset like Elijah’s: “I’ve had enough…take my life?” If your thinking is leading you down such paths—turn around. You are still living and breathing, so God is not finished with you or the work in you he plans to complete.
Un-leash the truth and let God turn that un-day into an un-expected blessing.