Episode 14 – Unexpected ENDINGS expected by God

My intention this week was to share my friend’s story. She has been traveling a hard road for a long time where there is now redemption and reconciliation, but not in the way she was expecting.

And we tried. Several times in fact. However, it is clear that God has decided it is not yet time for that story to be shared and that is okay.

But…now what? I had this climactic story to end my first podcast season with and things just didn’t pan out that way.

God has given me another climatic story to share with you today. A story that also has an unexpected ending for the person in it.

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Episode Scripture

Let two bulls be given to us, and let them choose one bull for themselves and cut it in pieces and lay it on the wood, but put no fire to it. And I will prepare the other bull and lay it on the wood and put no fire to it. And you call upon the name of your god, and I will call upon the name of the Lord, and the God who answers by fire, he is God.” And all the people answered, “It is well spoken.”

1 Kings 18:22-23 English Standard Version

“O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that you are God in Israel, and that I am your servant, and that I have done all these things at your word. Answer me, O Lord, answer me, that these people may know that you, O Lord, are God and that you have turned their hearts back.” Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt offering and the wood and the stones and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.

1 Kings 18:36-38 English Standard Version

Big Picture Take Away

Imagine what Elijah must have felt like at that moment after the fire fell from heaven, the false prophets have been killed and the sky finally broke open and the rain began to fall. Have you ever felt God use you in a dramatic way and afterward, there is a mix of elation and exhaustion that you can’t quite decide what to do with? Do you ever wonder, after completing what God has commanded you to do, what you are supposed to do next?

If you keep reading in 1 Kings 19, you will discover that his story doesn’t actually end on with that dramatic moment of elation and exhaustion on the top of the mountain. Instead, he finds himself running for his life. When God speaks to him, Elijah reminds God who he is and all he has done. He claims he is the only one left that obeys God and now, what does he get as a reward for all his obedience? He is life is threatened. How is THAT fair? 

You see, Elijah has become so focused on the work he has been doing for God that he seems to have forgotten that God is the one he is working for and it is God who determines the results of that work.

Practical Application

Whether the end you are experiencing is to your ministry, to your hardship, to your victory, or your time here on this earth, it is God who determines what the end will look like.

In the meantime:

Let us work as if on to the Lord and not man. (Col 3:23)

And whatever our hands find to do, let us do it with all our might. (Ecc 9:10)

And let us not forget that we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Eph 2:10)

Stay tuned the upcoming mini-series!

We are going to dive into the lives of 6 women in the Bible. Each walked through their own trials and brought their personal torment to God. 

Hagar, abused by her mistress and runs away to protect herself and her son. 
Elizabeth, watches women around her have babies while silently enduring the shame of being the barren wife of a priest. 
Hannah, who also could not conceive, but responded to her humiliation in a completely different way. 
Naomi, loses her husband, both her sons, and her hope of a future. 
Leah, spends decades cast aside in a loveless marriage that she did not choose to be in. 
Abigail, was married to a fool and risked everything to save her household from being destroyed. 

And learn more about the audio devtional series 6 Things God Cultivates in the Midst of Hardship

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See what God is doing with my mess daily as I share the trials and triumphs of being a mom, wife, and friend who is learning to let go of control and trust God to lead me while getting some laughs along the way!

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