Look here Project Manager…I set the Agenda, Not You.

agendaI recently was reading in 1 Kings about Elijah and Ahab. You may or may not know the story. King Ahab it is more wicked than all the previous kings. He actually thought that the previous kings evil was “trivial” in his eyes. He did more to provoke God than all the other kings of Israel. (1Kings 16:30-33) 

Elijah steps on the scene as God’s prophet. He pronounces a curse that rain will not come on the land until he asked God for it to return. Not even dew will appear.

Long story short, Elijah hides for 3 years and 6 months. Ahab has people looking for him. They think Elijah is the root of the curse. God comes to Elijah and says… “Go tell Ahab that the rain is going to return.”

This creates a unique occasion for a little contest. You’ll have to read about it in 1Kings 18. Let’s just say that God and Elijah win. A bunch of false prophets are killed. The rain returns. Elijah hears that his life is in danger because of Ahab’s wife Jezebel, and flees for safety. Elijah enters a cave in a mountain.

God speaks to Elijah… “What are you doing here?” 

Elijah answers, “I have been zealous for the Lord; the sons of Israel have rejected your covenant; they have torn down your altars; they have executed the prophets; I am the only one left; and they are trying to kill me.”

God tells Elijah to go stand in the entrance of the cave. Elijah expects to hear God’s voice again when three incredible things happen. There is an incredible strong wind that goes past the entrance. So strong that it breaks rocks. We’re told, that God’s voice was not in that wind.

Next there is a fantastic earthquake… But God’s voice was not in that earthquake.

Last there is Fire… But again, God’s voice is not in that fire. 

Then. Almost as an aside. There is a quiet sound of gentle blowing. God’s voice is there.

“What are you doing here?”

I Elijah gives the same answer I he gave before. “I have been zealous for the Lord; the sons of Israel have rejected your covenant; they have torn down your altars; they have executed the prophets; I am the only one left; and they are trying to kill me.”

God answers, “Go back and do the jobs I have for you to do, You are not the only one in northern Israel loyal to me. There are seven thousand there who have not worshipped Baal.”

—–

Elijah is me. He failed to achieve some man made expectations. The fantastic challenge (that I have not told you about… you must read it for yourself) was a dramatic demonstration of God. But the people are wicked. The demonstration of power was not enough for them to turn their hearts God. 

WE are often convinced that the “show” will convict and convince. That is not the case. God makes His point to Elijah, that He is not in the “Show.” He often shows up and speaks in that Still, Small, Quiet, Tender, Loving, Calm Voice.

Are you listening right now?

“I am in control. I don’t need you to set the agenda. In fact, I’m the one setting the agenda and handing out projects and tasks. I just want you to serve me. Go back and do the work that I have given you.” 

Wow. 

“God. Help me to focus on your agenda and not mine. You call me to service.  You are in control of all situations. My expectations should be placed aside. When I am afraid, I have no faith in your power. Help me Lord to take on each day and each task with this in mind.”

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2 thoughts on “Look here Project Manager…I set the Agenda, Not You.

  1. "Go back and do the work that I have given you.” that's been my life motto for the last 24+ months working retail, after applying to over 30 pastoral positions in the space of 12 months. The only question is how does one know when the next major shift is coming, before it hits like a wave and overwhelms you.

    • You know, when I’ve been running recently (that is not a metaphor…but then again, maybe it is) I’ve been thinking about this. I have no doubt that God has me where he wants me, but you do start to see the shift coming.

      Scientists look at climate, rain levels, Wind readings to predict how strong the hurricane season will be. Think about that, they look at rain in western africa to go into their prediction models. I think we can take readings of areas in our life to see the wave before it hits. The Word and our prayer life is often what we need to analyze.