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“Elijah Discovered God's Lovingkindness”
by Morning Meditation   
November 3rd, 2008

If ever it were befitting for a man to reap what he had sown and suffer the consequences of his own misdeeds, it would have been so in the case of Elijah. But God's thoughts are not as man's. He know all the storms of disappointment and broken hope which were sweeping across that noble spirit, as gusts of wind across an inland sea. His eye followed with tender pity every step of His servant's flight across the hills of Samaria. He did not love him less than when he stood, elated with victory, by the burning sacrifice. And His love assumed, if possible, a tenderer, gentler aspect as He stooped over Elijah while he slept. As a shepherd tracks the wondering sheep from the fold to the wild mountain pass where eagles, sailing in narrowing circles, watch its faltering steps, so did the love of God come upon Elijah as, worn in body by long fatigue and in spirit by the fierce war of passion, he lay and slept under the juniper tree.

And God did more than love him. He sought, by tender helpfulness, to heal and restore His servant's soul to its former health and joy. At His command, an angel, twice over, prepared a meal upon the desert sand and touched him and bade him eat. No upbraiding speeches, no word of reproach, no threats of dismissal, but only sleep and food and kindly thoughtfulness of the great journey which he was bent on making to Horeb, the mount of God. It makes us think of Him who, in after days, prepared in the early morning upon the shore of the lake, a breakfast such as wet and weary fishermen would love -- there was a fire, and fish laid thereon, and bread. And He did this for those who, following the impulsive lead of Peter, had apparently determined to wait no more for His coming but to return to the boats and fishing-tackle from which He had called them three years before.

It may be that these words will be read by those who have failed. You once avowed yourselves to be the Lord's; and lived for a little on the uplands where the golden light ever shines upon the happy spirit. Or perhaps you professed to enter the blessed life, and you did taste its joys and experience its liberty and victory. Or maybe you have stood up to teach others, stirring them to deeds of heroic courage and daring. But all that is over now. You have fallen. We need not now discuss the cause of your failure; you were overtaken in some sudden temptation, or you neglected communion with God, or you refused to live up to your light. But the sad fact remains that you have failed, perhaps as Elijah did, when everyone expected you to stand. And you are ashamed. You want to hide yourself from all who knew you in happier days. You have given up heart and hope and lie dejected and dispirited on the desert sands; you account yourself forsaken by God and man. But remember, though forsaken by man, you are not forgotten of God. He loves you still, and pities you, and yearns over you; and waits beside you, with loving tendance and provender, in order to restore your soul, and give you back the years that the cankerworm and caterpillar have eaten. - F. B. Meyer

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