1 Kings 17:8-16

Introduction

In 1 Kings 17, the story is told of Elijah’s encounter with the widow of Zarephath – a nameless woman who lived in a city experiencing
a dire situation. A drought had overtaken the land and as a result there was a lack of food to eat. But this difficult circumstance only
provided an opportunity for God to demonstrate His power through His divine provision. This narrative ultimately illustrates how
God supernaturally provides for those who operate by faith. Sometimes believers may feel a sense of drought about their own lives – as
if something we desperately need or want is not available. This lack of provision can be emotional, physical, or financial in nature. It
can be caused by sin or happen as a result of a trial, but in either case it can lead to a sense of hopelessness. However, the answer to any
sense of drought we experience is always the Lord. The source of our solution is God Himself even if God chooses to use a resource He
has provided to meet the need. Just like God guided Elijah in the season of drought and instructed him where to go, He is faithful to do
the same in the life of the believer who looks to him for help. Just like God used a raven to feed Elijah a few verses earlier (1 Kings 17:4), God can use anything thing He created to be a source of provision for His children.

The means of provision often involves God’s use of people. God told Elijah there would be a widow who would provide for him (1 Kings 17:9). God worked on Elijah’s behalf, making provision for exactly where He had told Elijah to go. Not only must we be open to
God utilizing the resources of His choosing, we must also trust Him to work on our behalf in His timing.

In order for the believer to see God’s divine provision at work, the first step always involves obedience to God’s Word. The widow had
been commanded to feed Elijah, but he had to obey God and make his way to the widow (1 Kings 17:10). Without obedience, it is
impossible to be in the right position for God’s miraculous provision. Next, provision usually involves ministry from one to another.
Before the widow experienced divine provision, she had to exercise faith and be willing to minister to someone else even when she
herself was in need (Luke 6:38). She had to trust that in her ministry to others, she herself would not be left empty-handed (1 Kings 17:14). Lastly, divine provision involves the supernatural reversal of circumstances. God reversed the widow’s situation (1 Kings 17:16). She ended up with more than she originally had given up. God has the power to reverse things we cannot see, but only when
we are willing to exercise our faith.

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