The seventh time the servant reported, “A cloud as small as a man's hand is rising from the sea.” 1 Kings 18 : 44
Good morning, friends. Elijah warned the King Ahab and the people for they were not faithful to God and won many souls for God at Mount Carmel.
Elijah said to Ahab, “Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain.” So Ahab went off to eat and drink, but Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees. “Go and look toward the sea,” he told his servant. And he went up and looked. “There is nothing there,” he said. Seven times Elijah said, “Go back.” The seventh time the servant reported, “A cloud as small as a man's hand is rising from the sea.” So Elijah said, “Go and tell Ahab, ‘Hitch up your chariot and go down before the rain stops you.’” Meanwhile, the sky grew black with clouds, the wind rose, a heavy rain came on and Ahab rode off to Jezreel.
We learn a lot from this passage.
One: There was no rain for three years, till the people and the king Ahab turned back to God and till the Baal and its prophets were slaughtered at Kishon valley. This clearly shows that there should not be anything between you and God to have your prayers answered. Anything should not be a prayer killer and nothing should be a barrier for your prayers to reach Heaven. When you throw away or stop giving high priority to the idols like statues, money, career, family, job, evil habits, etc… you’ll see the rain, i.e. the answers to your prayers.
Two: Elijah made the people realize that the Lord only is the living God. You and your life should convey the same to others. If your nation has to be blessed, not only you, but everyone has to turn back to God. What are you doing today to let this happen? At least, are you having a real burden that others should come to the Lord?
Three: Elijah asked the king to eat and drink. He asked the king to rejoice for the purpose of the drought was fulfilled. In the same way, when we leave all our idols, there is a great celebration in Heaven and the God will pour out His blessings on you and yours. And there will be no more weeping, but only feasts. This doesn’t mean you’ll have a smooth bed under your feet always; there will also be the path of problems, but God will give you peace and rest as He works out everything for your good.
Four: Even before the rain came, Elijah told that there was a sound of heavy rain. When Elijah’s servant looked up, he saw nothing. But Elijah was very confident on God and on His prayers. Friends, many times we too pray, but we keep on praying without confidence. And that’s why we’re not able to receive the answers. Elijah proclaimed the victory even before he actually saw the victory. So the Lord honored his faith and gave rain.
Five: When Elijah asked his servant to go and look up, his servant came and reported that he saw nothing six times. Elijah didn’t give up. He again asked him to go for the next time and there came the victory. There was cloud as small as a man’s hand. When you pray with lot of faith and when you see no immediate result, what are you doing? Are you praying a persistent prayer? I think some of us will pray a persistent prayer for ourselves. But are we praying persistently, till we get a ‘yes’ from the Lord for others?
Six: When we ask for something big like heavy rain, we may sometimes see only a small cloud as small as a man’s hand. But never give up. The big torrent is on its way. Our God is an awesome God. He can call everything out of nothing. Elijah knew it and the Lord reminds us today. Trust in Him for He’s a big God.
Seven: Can you guess the reason for such a heavy rain? It’s the prayer of the righteous man, Elijah. Just concentrate more on how he prayed. Climbed up to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees, he prayed. He prayed diligently and vibrantly for his nation. Today the Lord needs more and more people to stand in the gap and pray vibrantly. If you choose to fulfill His desires, He can use you like He used Elijah.