1 Kings 19:4-5 (VOICE) He journeyed into the desert for one day and then decided to rest beneath the limbs of a broom tree. There he prayed that his life would be over quickly and that he would die there beneath the tree. Elijah: I’m finished, Eternal One. Please end my life here and now , even though I have failed, and I am no better than my ancestors. Elijah then laid himself down under the broom tree and entered into a deep sleep. While he was sleeping, a heavenly messenger came and touched him and gave him instructions. Messenger: Get up, and eat.
Sometimes life and circumstances can feel so overwhelming. There are times we are so frustrated that there aren’t words to really express how we feel; we might even get a little dramatic – like Elijah. The beautiful thing is, Elijah wasn’t in some prayer closet on his knees praying “like he should.” He wasn’t moved to speak to God out of religious routine, it was out of relationship – he was just having a conversation out loud with God.
Elijah was being a human, spilling his emotional junk out in all its dramatic, messy, toddler-like tantrum. And like a good Father, God listened. And in immense love, mercy, and grace, God gently offers Elijah to have a snack and a nap, and when he wakes up, they’ll revisit this. God didn’t get mad, yell back, judge, or correct with the Word, He simply loved Elijah where he was at, and knew what he needed most in the moment.
When we are faced with someone verbally dumping all their emotional junk or expectations on us, may we seek the Father and respond with His grace. Perhaps we have to step back and revisit the issue with this person: eat a snack (the Word) and take a nap (pray and rest knowing God’s got this).
May we be mindful that if we are faced with an Elijah, it is perfectly ok to not have the answers on how to deal with it in that exact moment. It’s ok to kindly tell someone “I need a snack and a nap”….essentially, I love you and I love you enough to pause this right now before it escalates out of control. The person might not like that in the moment, but it’s ok. God has it covered.
Finally, may we be reminded that God loves dialogue with us no matter where we are, what time of the day it is, what we are doing, what we are dealing with, or how messy emotionally we might feel. He loves us – messy or not, and wants to be a part of it. He craves and desires relationship. It doesn’t matter if you’re yelling “ugh! This stinks!! I hate this!” He wants relationship. Know that He will offer you a “snack and a nap” with an immeasurable amount of love and tender mercies.