My church lesson for the elementary kids was to have been a story about Elijah. I had an outline in my head, with a dynamite closing point ready to go.
Without a doubt, Elijah was one of the most colorful prophets in the Old Testament. My main point of the story was Elijah’s strong faith in spite of his uncertain and somewhat scary journey ahead.
I explained how Elijah’s adventures went from exciting and dangerous to depressing and discouraging. I was almost to my riveting closing, when I asked the kids if they were surprised that Elijah had gotten discouraged.
A fifth grader, sitting on the floor in the front row quickly responded, “Nope, bad stuff happens to Christians too.”
She stated it with all the convictions of my college Bible professor, and I was stunned at her quick comeback. I figured she had heard someone say it recently; so, I further questioned, “Really? Even if we love God with all of our hearts, and give Him our lives, bad things can happen to us?”
“Sure,” she smiled, “But, God stays with us the whole time. We’re never alone – ever. He’s got it covered.”
There it was. She had finished with her point, and was completely satisfied with the truth she had just spouted to the whole room.
Bad things happen to Christians, too. BUT, God is with us the whole time. He never leaves us or forsakes us. (Deut. 31:6) He’s got it covered.
It was better than my final point.
It’s been a rough year for Duane and me on many levels. I find myself getting solace from men like Elijah. One day he was on top of the world, having proven to thousands of people that God was the one true God. In front of a vast audience – full of the most influential people of that time – God had rained fire down, at Elijah’s plea, and proved there was no other God but Himself.
Elijah was the hero of the hour. It couldn’t get much better than this. A prophet’s dream had been realized!
A week later he wanted to die. He was tired, burned out and hungry. God prescribed some rest and nourishment to help him on his way for his next assignment.
Having a bad day? Don’t worry! If you belong to God, you are not alone – ever. He stays with you the whole time, and His plan includes rest and nourishment for your next assignment.
I love teaching kids – they trust so easily. “Out of the mouths of babes” (Matthew 21:16), God teaches us so many things.
Hebrews 13:5, God assures us, “I’ll never let you down, never walk off and leave you. We can boldly quote, God is there, ready to help; I’m fearless no matter what. Who or what can get to me?” (The Message)