There are a few hats I wear and this year one of them is a Sunday School teacher. I co-teach a class for women and although we’re still finding normal after being on forced hiatus last year, I love it. I think I learn more than anyone else because I have to dig a little harder to prepare.
We started the new study, Elijah: Faith and Fire by Priscilla Shirer. If you aren’t aware of her, she is Pastor Tony Evans daughter and she can preach. She’s also an author and actress. I enjoy her ministry a lot.
Elijah is no exception. Although we just started, I’m already gleaning so many treasures. For one, when we read triumphant stories like Elijah and Mt. Carmel or our favorite Christian victory, we see and want only the highlight reel. We don’t take into account the snapshots developed in the dark room. There’s a lot of blood, sweat, and tears that goes into being an obedient and active follower of Christ.
I also stopped when I read about Elijah’s background. We don’t know a lot, but he was telling King Ahab who not only God was, but who his God was. Think on that. He was in the presence of royalty, not something that happens every day in modern times. In reading, there’s not about Elijah that’s royalty. If anything, he was a simple sheep herder from the mountains. That visual isn’t appealing. He probably had dirty clothes, unkempt hair, and was generally the last person who should be standing next to King Ahab.
I don’t know how Elijah got to that moment where he’s telling the most poweful man in the country about God and that no matter how many rings the guy has, Elijah is making it clear he is unimpressed because his allegiance is to Yawheh and Him alone. God used Elijah not because he was the most educated, or good-looking or wealthiest.
He used Elijah because the man was willing.—Julie ArduiniTweet
If you’re willing, God will use you, and I believe for great things, even if they seem less than amazing to you. What doesn’t matter much to the world is probably a big deal in heaven and what isn’t impressive in heaven is often a big deal to this world. Afterall, gold is pavement in heaven.
I write all this because I know lately I’ve struggled with feeling useful. Between the pandemic and the grief from losing my mom, I have serious brain fog. My memory is shot. I start a sentence and trail off. Meals I’ve mad for twenty years I’m burning or forgetting ingredients. If my faith weren’t as strong I would be listening to the enemy’s taunt that I’m a failure and useless.
If that’s the song playing in your head, trash that recording. It’s all lies. You are a masterpiece made by God. And even with flaws, you are never too far removed from making a difference for His kingdom. Remember Rahab? She was listed in the Bible as a prostitute. Yet, she knew God was real and she was willing to be used. In the end, she was protected and spoiler alert—listed in the lineage of Jesus.
That’s how God works.
There are so many examples I could use. Moses had a speech impediment. David was a kid. I’m just a middle-age chubby girl who tries to change lives within the pages of clean romance books.
Yet God can use us.
Just like with Elijah and his simple look and life, God can use you.
Are you willing?