What the Strong Ones Do

And he called to her and said, “Please bring me a little water in a cup, that I may drink.” _1 Kings 17:10

What a person askes for reveals a lot about them.

Take Elijah for instance.  He is mostly known for being a thunderous Old Testament Prophet shutting up the heavens and calling down fire and other such flashy demonstrations of his calling.

But there’s another side to Elijah.

Think about it, he had a God-mandate, God had told him to go to a certain city and instruct a widow to take care of him.  So how does he handle it? 

Not like a lot of people I’ve witnessed who had mandates, authority, and power.  Who barge in and start barking out demands and throwing their weight around and letting everyone know just how important they are.

Elijah was just the opposite. He was kind, gracious, and restrained. 

“Please bring me a little water in a cup.” 

Does that sound like you?

It is so easy to be demanding, rude, and intrusive.  Our society celebrates these things.  But is it right?  Does it reflect the heart of God, does it reflect you—at least at your best? (And why wouldn’t you put your best foot forward?)

Humility is a forgotten word and forgotten skill. 

“Controlled strength,” that’s a good definition for humility. 

Only people who are secure in themselves can be humble.  Yes, they have mandates, authority, advantage, and power.  But they use it judiciously and graciously taking into account the other person. 

They understand they’re stewards of that power and that they represent the Power from whom all power and privilege eventually originates.

One of my favorite verses in the Bible that describes the model shepherd (pastor, leader) is:

10 Behold, the Lord GOD shall come with a strong hand,
And His arm shall rule for Him;
Behold, His reward is with Him,
And His work before Him.

And what does a “strong hand” look like?

11 He will feed His flock like a shepherd;
He will gather the lambs with His arm,
And carry them in His bosom,
And gently lead those who are with young.

Isaiah 40:10-11

That’s the kind of person I want to be and I bet it describes you too. 

The ONE THING for today: Thank God we have rights and mandates and we have privileges and influence, but let’s not forget, the great ones are humble and gentle and kind.  They can afford to be, they’re strong.

And one more thing, we don’t always feel strong do we?  We can learn a lot about how to act from Isaiah 40:10-11, but it was actually written to describe how our Father God does indeed conduct Himself. 

Remember that. 

Even when you feel weak, alone, and forsaken…your strong Shepherd is there guiding (and sometimes carrying) you through the narrow paths of life. 

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez 🇨🇦 on Unsplash