Quickly now, what was Elijah’s favorite line of clothing? Yes, a hairy garment (animal skin), and an old leather belt. Smelly apparel after spending days on the back side of the desert I wouldn’t doubt. Either he had a closet full of hairy garments, or maybe just a couple that he swapped out as needed (2 Kings 1:8)?
Which is a perfect way to point out just how odd Elijah really was. He comes out of nowhere in 1 Kings 17, then disappears into thin air in 2 Kings 2. He faces down powerful kings, but runs from Jezebel. He throws choice verbal insults at his listeners which were probably not part of God’s original script (1 Kings 18:27).
In spite of all his oddities, here’s what I remember about Elijah: He prayed. I don’t mean the mindless “bless this food” brand of praying either. No, when Elijah prayed that it wouldn’t rain, it didn’t rain. When he prayed that it would rain, it did rain. When he prayed for it to rain fire, it rained fire.
When one understands the prayer power of Elijah, one wonders if there was anything Elijah could pray that he would not receive?
Contrast the prophets of baal who unsuccessfully danced around a bone dry altar, slashing themselves, screaming to get their god’s attention for hours. Elijah however, steps up, speaks calmly to YAHWEH, and instantly the fire of heaven falls. The people of Israel are dumbfounded at YAHWEH’s Almighty power. All they can say is, “YAHWEH, He is God.”
So what was Elijah’s secret in prayer? Did he just know the right words to say? Did he have the right pitch or volume to his voice? Was it the length of his prayers? Or maybe it was his posture, or location? The secret was that Elijah prayed fervently, expectantly, specifically, simply, with the faith and confidence that the Almighty is truly the Almighty.
The secret of Elijah’s prayers is that they were offered by a man who loved God, who prayed with a whole heart and a watchful eye.
James 5:17-18 assures us that just as Elijah received answers to prayer, so we, who are human like Elijah can expect God to answer our prayers.
So, tomorrow is May 7, the National Day of Prayer. I’m asking you to get hold of another believer to pray with him/her. Pick up the phone and call them. Text them, letting them know what you are praying. Husband, pray with your wife. Parent, pray with your child/children. Pray with a friend. Pray for them. Pray for our church. Pray for our nation. Pray for our world.
Whatever way you choose, don’t wait for a program to get you to pray! Just pray!
Pastor Shawn “”
“Cast your burden on the LORD, and He will sustain you.”