Making Sense of The Tragedy
by Sherry Hoffcastle
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Why is This Happening to Me? Making Sense of the Tragedy
1 Kings 17
The name Elijah means ďThe Lord is My GodĒ. Many of Elijahís miracles paralleled those of Moses. God decided to remove Elijah from Israelís presence because of Israelís wickedness and Ahabís blatant disobedience. Ahab continued to worship baal, so God relocated Elijah, thus removing his care and blessings from Israel.
Elijah asked the widow to give all she had. In return, the Lord promised to keep her and her son fed until the drought was over. So she went away and did as she was told, trusting in faith that God would keep his promise. After the death of her son, many questions were raised. Why is this happening? Are you here to remind me of how wicked I am? I thought God was supposed to be faithful?
When God blindsides us, how are we to respond? We are doing exactly what we are supposed to be doing. Weíre trusting God by obeying, living by faith, and then tragedy strikes. It seems unfair doesnít it?
1. Ask God what itís all about. Heís bigger than our questions and the first thing we should do when tragedy strikes is seek him out. Wait for an answer. It may come or it may not, but the simple fact that weíre coming to him in our weakness will ultimately give us strength.
2. Trust him. He would not bring you this far only to lead you to disaster. There is a purpose in everything he does. We donít always understand it but he is God and his ways are higher than ours. (Isaiah 55:8)
3. Remember who he is. He is God and he keeps his promises. If he promised to bring you to a better place, he will. And it just may be that this is something you have to go through to get to that better place.
After the widowís son was resurrected, several things happened.
1. Her faith was restored. She learned from that tragedy to take God at his word and never doubt his promises. Her relationship was strengthened because she learned that good can come from the most unlikely sources.
2. Elijah was validated. It appears that he didnít understand any of it either. Itís quite possible that even Elijah needed a new dose of faith. Perhaps God was stirring the coals of Elijahís faith walk- giving him new reason to be joyful. It just may be that when we go through something horrific, it might have nothing to do with us and everything to do with those around us.
3. Godís promise was fulfilled. The woman and her son received life in every sense of the word. Often when Godís promises are fulfilled thereís an added bonus. Not only do we get what we were promised, God gets the glory and his character is exalted.
God can and will use tragedy to make a point. He knew that womanís heart and obviously felt like he needed to get her attention. It shouldnít surprise any of us that he would go to such drastic measures just to restore us to our rightful place. Through that experience the widow learned to lean on God for every need. She learned to trust that he will provide and he does keep his promises. Just because things look really bad, we need to remember that God is still working. Heís working in ways that we arenít even aware of. If you canít make any sense out of the tragedy you seem to be in, know that God does have a purpose for it. In the end, after the tears are shed and the pain has subsided, know that blessings are just around the corner. In the meantime, Iíll cry with you until you can laugh again.
© Sherry Castelluccio 2008
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Great writing and presention. We are to believe God anyway. We can't look at it with natural eyes and make sense of it. We must look at it through the Spirit and through spiritual eyes. We have to trust that His character and nature do not change. He loves us more than we can fathom and all is intended for our ultimate good. Great sermon.