Summary: Depression will poison the life that God has for us. God has provided antidotes! Depression is not a spirit of God, therefore there will be no more cave dwelling for me!
Review what has taken place with Elijah up until this point.
Depression will poison the life God has for us! God has provided an antidote!
Antidote #1- Leave. (11) You must:
1. Remove yourself. He is physically left the
cave. We must physically remove ourselves from that unhealthy environment. Television, movies and video games are the worst. They desensitize you from certain emotions such as lust, and anger. (Our anniversary) There is a time to listen to certain individuals, but there is certainly a time to walk away and remove yourself from the temptation. Joseph ran away. Physically leave and go to God immediately!
2. Refocus on God. At some point Elijah had to
repent from being self-centered, and become Christ centered. The biggest temptation in the middle of a cold, dark cave is self-pity. We must realize who we are focused on, repent, and refocus on God!
3. Reverence God. “Before God”. Elijah had to
place himself in a position of worship. It is okay to feel and express emotion! When we worship, we need to be in place where we have a feeling and/or emotion of deep respect, love and awe for God. Otherwise are we truly worshipping God?
Antidote #2- Learn. (11-12) Elijah had to listen for God. He had to discern his voice. We need to develop the skill of listening to God, not just talking. Actually hearing from God. Notice God is present, just not speaking the way Elijah would expect. We need to realize that in those times where God appears distant, and silent, He is really closer than ever, still working, and is speaking as clear as anytime. Elijah learned how you would not hear from God:
1. You won’t hear from God in the prideful events.
Elijah didn’t hear God in the wind. We will never hear from God in the huffing and puffing of the world. Those things that boast and blow usually aren’t from God.
2. You won’t hear from God in the phenomenal events.
Elijah didn’t hear from God in the earthquake. Too often we look to hear from God in the lightning bolt experience. God chooses not to speak in that way.
3. You won’t hear from God in the pious events.
Elijah didn’t hear from God in the fire. Jesus told a group that they loved the traditions of man more than the commands of God. The fire can represent the “man made traditions” that we see as spiritual. The things that we choose to do that make us appear to be spiritual; therefore we think that we are better than anyone else. We need to lose focus on us. It is not about us; it is about God and His grace. “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Cor. 12:9. When we boast, may we boast as Paul boasted. Why? God is a humble God who expects us to be a humble people! James 4:10; He is a patient God. 2 Peter 3:9. Hitlerism will not work! Communism fails. Their foundation lacks the one area that God is most concerned with. (Story of love). God wants us to choose to love one another.
4. God speaks through peace.
He spoke to Elijah through a still, small, voice. More often than not He does the same today. The reason we miss His voice is because we are not attentive to it!
Antidote # 3- Learn. (13-18) Elijah had a lesson of Godliness. God wants us to learn to be Godly in our:
1. Obedience. (13-17) After hearing from God,
Elijah started back into the cave. God said, “What are you doing Elijah?” Isn’t that what we do? We hear from God, then turn and go back to the same lifestyle as before, the same old behavior patterns. God speaks the 2nd time, and Elijah obeys.
2. Outlook. There were 7,000 people who had
not bowed and kissed the Baal. Elijah didn’t know this. He had to change his perspective and see the way that God sees. We need to realize that we are not alone. God is using other people within this church, within this denomination, as well as other denominations to do His will. God is also using those outside of the Christian lifestyle to accomplish His will. (Pharoah)
No more hiding in caves! You will not find cave dwelling anymore in the Old Testament, and there aren’t any in the New. Jesus didn’t hide in a cave. He arose so that we can arise from our caves in life! Fear, anxiety, stress, etc. can no longer keep us there. We are called to be lighthouses. Lighthouses aren’t needed in caves, or mountains. They are needed along the shores, the edges of life. Lighthouses aren’t made to be shiny, they are made to shine! At the edges, storms occur. Storms filled with water, sand and salt that attack the outside of the lighthouse. Nothing protects the outside from the storm. What they are built on, their foundation, is what protects them from the storm. Our foundation protects us as well. Are you founded on Christ today?