With our culture in chaos and our foundational truths under attack, it is common to hear Christians speaking of God lifting His hand from our land in response to our sinfulness. There is certainly Biblical support for this idea, but many believers, who are trying to remain faithful, wonder why they are being punished, too. However, throughout Scripture we see God deal in one way with nations and in another way with individuals. From the days of Noah, nations may fall, but faithful people are spared.
An example is found in the Old Testament book of 1 Kings, chapter 17, where we see God using Elijah to punish pagan Gilead:
And Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead, said unto Ahab, “As the Lord God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, except according to my word.” 2 And the word of the Lord came unto him, saying, 3 “Get thee hence and turn thee eastward, and hide thyself by the Brook Cherith, that is before the Jordan. 4 And it shall be that thou shalt drink of the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there.” 5 So he went and did according unto the word of the Lord; for he went and dwelt by the Brook Cherith, that is before the Jordan. 6 And the ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank from the brook. 7 And it came to pass after a while that the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land.
Elijah was a faithful prophet of God. He obeyed His leading and went to sit by the brook where God took care of him…until He didn’t. What must Elijah have thought when the brook he relied upon dried up? Did he cry out to God, “Why? What have I done to deserve this?” as many of us have done in times of trouble? Or did he realize the dried brook was the direct result of his own prayer? He was faithful to God in his prayer, God answered the prayer, and the temporary results made Elijah uncomfortable, but eventually God led Elijah away from the dried brook and continued to bless and use him.
Could the current unrest in our own land be part of God’s Divine answer to the prayers of His faithful people? Perhaps these uncomfortable days are necessary for the Lord to bring about healing in our land. We know the Father sometimes provides discomfort to encourage His people to spiritual growth.
Looking at current events from this perspective gives me hope, especially if the Church can take advantage of these days of testing for growth and revival.