Then Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah, saying, “So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I do not make your life as the life of one of them by tomorrow about this time.” (1 Kgs 19:2)
Those words sent Elijah running. When Queen Jezebel threatened to kill him, Elijah was so fearful that he pleaded for the Lord to take away his life. How could it be? Elijah had been so strong in faith—did he not challenge the four-hundred-and-fifty false prophets of Baal and slaughter them all on Mt Carmel?
“‘If it had not been the Lord who was on our side,’ Let Israel now say—” (Psalm 124:1)
As this year draws to a close and a new one begins, take some time to look back and reflect on the past year. If God had not been in the equation, how would things have turned out? What kind of changes would there have been? Imagining what life would have been like without God reminds us of His continual faithfulness, amazing grace, and beautiful plan that He has for us. It reminds us of the importance of counting our blessings, cultivating a heart of gratitude, and developing the habit of always thanking God in all circumstances.
When I was younger, one of my favorite poems was “Footprints in the Sand.” However, as I grew older, I heard criticisms against this poem, that it was misleading because God doesn’t carry us on our spiritual journey; we ourselves need to walk with His help, even through the difficult times. I have even heard of a similar poem vulgarly titled “Buttprints in the Sand,” which needless to say uses satire to prove this very point.
While I agree that our walk of faith is indeed a walk that requires our own efforts and resolve, I believe there is merit in the original poem, which at the end reveals that when there was only one set of footprints, it was not that God abandoned us, but that He carried us. Continue reading