A Man’s Hand

There must have been some disappointment in the servant of Elijah. If not, perhaps some doubt. The prophet he served said there would be rain. This was exciting news because the country was suffering from a terrible drought. It would be nice to be able to grow crops and take a bath or drink a tall glass of cold water. 

Then Elijah said to Ahab, “Go up, eat and drink; for there is the sound of abundance of rain.” So Ahab went up to eat and drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; then he bowed down on the ground, and put his face between his knees, and said to his servant, “Go up now, look toward the sea.” So he went up and looked, and said, “There is nothing.” And seven times he said, “Go again.”

1 Kings 18:41–43, NKJV

I am sure cattle were suffering and therefore a meat shortage meant no backyard grilling. But the prophet had heard from God that this would all be over soon. 

When we hear such news, we could either be encouraged and excited or live in disbelief. They had been disappointed. After all, they were living in a drought. Would God finally open up the windows of heaven and give them rain? 

It does take faith. Faith is not self-confidence, although it may appear that way to others. It is not positive thinking, which it can be mistaken for. Faith is a belief that God exists and that He desires to help those who call upon His name. As a person of “faith”, I do not assert my own will and tell myself that it is God speaking, but I listen for God’s “still, small voice”. How can I discern the difference between the “Voice” and presumption? Because my voice is mostly concerned about me. I must learn to hear myself, truly so that I know when the authentic voice of God speaks to my heart. That voice is completely consistent with what He says in Holy Scripture. There is a sweet spot that when I know, I know. 

It takes a while to get to know someone. Even if they want the relationship as bad as you do. We must give and take. We must try not to dominate the conversation, nor be the silent one. But we must interact or, as my wife would say, hit the tennis ball back. When we do, it is surprising how well we get to know someone and how easily the conversation goes. It is the same way with God. When we do this, we are able to hear his voice, know it is Him, and believe that what He has said will come to pass. 

Well, that is the conversation Elijah had with God. They talked back and forth often. I am sure Elijah could discern that God was ready to lift the drought, so he asked. He believes that God would do it. 

Then it came to pass the seventh time, that he said, “There is a cloud, as small as a man’s hand, rising out of the sea!” So he said, “Go up, say to Ahab, ‘Prepare your chariot, and go down before the rain stops you.’ ”

1 Kings 18:44, NKJV

It took seven times to see a cloud as small as a man’s hand. Elijah got so excited that he did what no weatherman would do—he gave the forecast from a small cloud—“rain’s a-comin’” There would be a huge storm that would end the drought for good. 

Now it happened in the meantime that the sky became black with clouds and wind, and there was a heavy rain. So Ahab rode away and went to Jezreel.

1 Kings 18:45, NKJV

It happened all because of a relationship. Some people want God to be a genie of sorts to grant all their wishes when they say the right words of “faith”. Others are so stand-off-ish that they dare not ask God for a thing because, in their estimation, God doesn’t answer with miracles anymore. The truth is, both need a deeper, more intimate relationship with Jesus. In fact, we all do. 

I am not Elijah. I am Steve. I am still getting to know God, even though He knows me. When I seek Him, I’ll find Him, that’s what He said. I am still seeking and He is still revealing more and more of Himself in this relationship we have. Jesus made this possible for all. We can all be in that sort of relationship with God. In intimacy comes more intimacy. When we get to know God so well, when we ask, we receive. Not because of some wish fulfillment, but because we are able to discern his voice and will and when we want what God wants, we get what we want. 

Blessings to you! If you do not know Jesus, you can have this kind of relationship. All you have to do is to start the conversation. We call that prayer. You tell him you are ready to stop running and you are ready to stop your life of sin with His help and you believe that He exists. But even more so you want that relationship where there is a conversation between you and Him, knowing He is your master and teacher, being willing to do what He wants as He reveals it. That’s it! In the name of Jesus, you are in the family of God. Keep listening for His voice through the Bible. Get into a Bible-teaching church and begin to get to know your brothers and sisters in this family. Remember, you are loved! 


“…they were all asleep, because a deep sleep from the Lord had fallen on them.” 1 Samuel 26:12 (NKJV)

No one prayed. Nobody sought wisdom. They just did. They acted. How did they know they were going to succeed? How did they know that God was with them?

David was being pursued by the king of Israel. Saul wanted David dead and was doing everything he could to make it happen. But David kept slipping out of his hands. At last, Saul and his armies had found David hiding in the Wilderness of Ziph and were ready to pounce the next day. 

That night David has a plan. He wants to go into the camp, steal king Saul’s spear and a water jug sitting next to his head. Why? To show that at any point, if he wanted, he could kill the king. How was this accomplished? The Lord put every warrior in the camp in a deep sleep. It could not have been accomplished without God’s help. But he didn’t and wouldn’t because, although Saul was David’s enemy, David was not the King’s.

How could David be sure that he could pull off this dangerous covert operation without injury or death? Because of God’s promise. David would be king one day, that was sure. He took that promise to the bank and cashed it in. 

How can we know we are making good, godly, decisions? When we rest upon the promises that God has given. We don’t have to worry. There is no anxiety with the people of God because we know that He who promised is faithful. 

In chapter 27, David is weary and forgets his promise and heads to the Philistines for over a year. This puts him in a precarious position but does not make the promise of non-effect. After lying and cheating and even almost losing everything—David once again encourages himself in the Lord and is set back on the promises of God. He eventually realizes that promise and becomes the king of Israel. 

Are you wrestling with a choice you must make? Look for God’s promises to you and act accordingly. You may already possess the answer you’ve been looking for. 

D. V. 

The Lord Has Kept Me Alive

Caleb was a man on a mission. Along with his compatriot, Joshua, he wanted to take the land immediately, when Moses was still alive. But now, it was forty-five years later. Surely he was too weak, as an eighty-five-year-old man to fight, right? Absolutely not. He was the same.

“And now, behold, the Lord has kept me alive, as He said, these forty-five years, ever since the Lord spoke this word to Moses while Israel wandered in the wilderness; and now, here I am this day, eighty-five years old. As yet I am as strong this day as on the day that Moses sent me; just as my strength was then, so now is my strength for war, both for going out and for coming in.“

Joshua 14:10–11 NKJV

He never lost heart, which meant that he never lost his zeal for the promise of God. He knew that God would be faithful and would fulfill his promise to Caleb and that Caleb would possess the land. He never lost heart.

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory…”

2 Corinthians 4:16–17 NKJV

We fight the spiritual battle like Caleb. We take ground and refuse to give it up. If we need help, we ask for it, but we keep our eye on the prize.

The goal is to be the means by which the Spirit uses to free as many hearts as possible before we hear the trumpet sound or are called home a little early. Looking forward to that day; looking forward to that rest.

But not yet.

Grace, Peace and Joy

Some thoughts I’m impressed upon to share, while sitting in the ER with Steve, Thursday, December 7, 2017.

I’ve been blessed to be asked of late, by many people, how I’m doing through all this. The love is felt from you all!❤️ Thankful and grateful for all you precious people God has placed in our lives.

I needed to sit and reflect a while in order to really give an accurate answer to that.

It will be 4 years next month since Steve first fell ill. Before we knew it was cancer.

(Took 3 months to get the diagnosis).

How am I doing? God has been my Rock, my Strength and Sustainer, my Peace, for which I’m eternally grateful!

Heb. 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

2Cor. 12:10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Rom. 5:2 through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

2Cor. 9:8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.

2Cor. 12:9 And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

These are precious promises that I hold on to!

I have joy in so many ways. But alongside of it is sorrow. They seem to co-exist within me at this time. It is a paradox, but scripture says:

Psa. 30:5 Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.

Psa. 126:5 Those who sow in tears Shall reap in joy.

Hab. 3:18 Yet I will rejoice in the LORD,

I will joy in the God of my salvation.

John 15:11 ¶ “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.

Acts 20:24 But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.

I post these scriptures so all will see Jesus. He is the Author and Finisher of my faith. He is my Savior and I believe His Word.

So, I face those moments, allow that pain and shed a few tears. I allow the sadness. It’s human and God designed us with emotions, but they are just moments. Moments of how our life looks nothing like the life we dreamed of. It died, we mourned, but our eyes and hearts are fixed on Jesus. We believe and know God has something planned that is His best for us. Not what we may think is our best, but His. The best is yet to come. We mourn the loss of health, not being with our children and my parents. We transitioned our church that we planted 15 1/2 years ago. We are sad, because we miss everyone, but we are joyous in its new beginning with Pastor Chris Reif, his wife Heather and 2 precious kiddos.

Our trust and hope are in God! So our thoughts do not linger on worry or the sorrow or pain. Rom. 15:13 ¶ Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck what is planted; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance. He has made everything beautiful in its time. ~ Ecclesiastes 3

Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know.” ~ John 14:1-4

Don’t know the way? The way is Jesus. John 3:16, John 14:6 Read the Book of John. May you know the One Who is our peace, our joy, our comfort and hope.

In the grip of His grace,

<>< Monica