Elijah, as we will come to see, is a significant figure in the OT, and his appearance here in 1 Kings 17 is the first mention of him. We are not given any background, no genealogy, nothing other than the fact that he was a Tishbite, who was one of the settlers of Gilead as it says here in the WEB version, or the NIV says he is from Tishbe.
In our chapter here, Elijah goes with a message from the Lord to Ahab, the king of Israel. The message is that because Ahab has not worshipped God, but idols, there will be no dew or rain in Israel.
And then God told Elijah to hide by the brook Cherish (KER-ith) by the Jordan river, where he was fed by ravens and drank from the brook. And then the brook dried up after some time because of the drought.
So God sent him to Zarephath, where He would move on a poor widow woman to give him food and shelter.
And this is what I want to talk about for just a minute or two.
This woman and her son were at the very end of their rope. When Elijah first saw her, she was out looking for a couple of sticks that she could cook her and her son’s last meal. There was only a little flour and oil left, and after this, they were going to starve to death. The drought had been hard on the land, and she evidently had no more options left to provide for herself and her son.
But God chose her to provide for Elijah until such time as He would end the drought.
And isn’t that just like God? He often chooses people who do not, by all appearances, have the ability to do the work God calls them to do. He used an old couple who were well into the 90s to be the parents of a great nation, he called a man with a speech impediment to lead that nation out of slavery, He called a shepherd boy to be their king, He called uneducated fishermen, a tax collector and a few other men to care for and grow the infant church.
And he chose a windshield repair guy in Riverside, California to start the world’s first Christian podcast.
When He calls you to do something for Him, He supplies what is needed to accomplish the work.
When He called this poor widow to feed Elijah, the food never ran out. And to prove that it was God who supplied their need, when her son died from an illness, God restored life to the boy when Elijah prayed for him.
Do you think you have nothing that God can use for His kingdom? Good! That’s exactly the building blocks that He needs!
What do you think?