Reflections: Monday of the Fifth Week after Trinity

Today’s Reading: 1 Kings 19:11-21

Daily Lectionary: 1 Samuel 1:21-2:17; Galatians 6:1-18

And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire, the sound of a low whisper. (1 Kings 19:12)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. The appearance of the Lord to Elijah in 1 Kings is not how I would come if I were God. If I were God, I would come in the earthquake and the fire. The full glory of my power would be displayed so that Elijah and the whole world would feel, hear, and see my divine majesty and power. The coming of the Lord should be an event that stops everything and makes everyone take notice. I would come with a vengeance, blasting everyone and everything that fails to do and live as I command. It’s probably a good thing I am not God! 

In 1 Kings, the Lord comes to Elijah, not in an earthquake or fire but in the sound of a low whisper. And what’s even more amazing, Elijah recognizes the Lord in the small, quiet sound. He wraps his face and goes out of the cave to listen to and receive God. As one of the greatest prophets, Elijah knew by faith that God works in ways beyond our understanding. The Lord comes often to the world in ways that the world considers weakness. A great example of this is Jesus’ death on the Cross. The world looks at this event and cannot imagine how it accomplishes anything. Death is viewed as the ultimate weakness, yet God’s power is greatest in the death of His Son. It is by Jesus’ death on the Cross and His resurrection that all our sins are forgiven and we are made alive.

The smallest whisper from God comes to Elijah that day with a message of hope and direction. This same whisper speaks to us through the pages of Holy Scripture. In a world filled with fires, earthquakes, and great noise, it is only by faith that you and I can stop looking at the world and quiet our hearts and minds to hear the whisper of God. This Word of God will always bring us peace, joy, and contentment, things we need so that we might set out each day doing the things God wants us to. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

Heavenly Father, we live in a world filled with distractions and turmoil. Help us to listen for Your quiet whispers so that we might find forgiveness, life, and direction in Your holy Word. Today and everyday, continue to pour out Your blessing upon us so that we might live as obedient children, trusting in You. In Jesus’ Name we pray. Amen.

-Rev. William K. Stottlemyer is pastor of St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Hancock, MD.

Audio Reflections Speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch

Christians need to aspire to being people of THE faith. Not just any will do. In Faith Misused, Dr. Alvin Schmidt shares his case for a Christian reclaiming of the word “faith” from its ambiguous modern uses. Now available from Concordia Publishing House.