Open Heavens Devotional by Pastor E.A. Adeboye
MEMORIZE: “Mine eye also is dim by reason of sorrow, and all my members are as a shadow.” (Job 17:7).
READ: 1 Kings 17:17-24
Sickness is an agent of death. Many people die through a sickness. Even Elisha took ill and died of sickness (2 Kings 13:14). Yet, Exodus 15:26 says we do not have to be sick. If you hear God’s Word and diligently obey Him, He promises that He will not afflict you with sicknesses. This means, as long as you are in good standing with God, no sickness is allowed to come to you, except the one you bring upon yourself. This also tells us that the presence of sickness in our bodies could indicate that all is not well between us and God. So whenever you take ill, before you start looking for an external cause, first look inwards: find out if it is as a result of sin, because according to 3 John 2, God wants you in good health always.
Another lesson here refers to the nature of sin. Sin is a seed. Anytime we sin—probably in secret—a seed is sown, which in due course, will culminate in death. When the woman in today’s passage lost her son, the incident immediately remind her of her sins. Although we have no records of the sins she committed, it is obvious that her sin brought fear and a lack of confidence. 1 John 4:18 says fear torments. As long as you live in secret sin, you will be tormented by fear. Are you living in fear? Check your life for any immediate cause. Have you lost your confidence in God? Ask the Lord to help you discover where you missed it, so that you can make your ways right before Him.
Moreover, it is important for us to consider our initial reaction to a crisis situation. When the woman’s son died, she began to accuse Elijah as the cause. When some believers go through unpleasant situations, their initial responses could be terrible. They look for people to blame, accuse God, and say all manner of things they would later regret. If you handle sorrow this way, you have forgotten that you are different. Believers do not respond to sorrow the way unbelievers, who have no hope do. Job 17:7 says sorrow dims vision and makes people forget what God has done for them in the past. Whenever you face a sorrowful situation, keep a quiet spirit, be of few words, and say, ‘Lord, you know better. Your will shall stand’. This is imperative since you do not understand fully or have a clear picture what has gone wrong. Refrain from unfounded accusations.
How you handle adversity is a major yardstick for measuring your spiritual maturity. Pray: Father, increase my faith.
Bible in One year: Psa. 61-63