5 Minute Read

TODAY’S BIBLE READING:

1 Kings 19:1-21
Acts 12:1-23
Psalm 136:1-26
Proverbs 17:14-15

TODAY’S BIBLE VERSE(S):

1 Kings 19:3-5 (CSB): “Then Elijah became afraid and immediately ran for his life. When he came to Beer-sheba that belonged to Judah, he left his servant there, but he went on a day’s journey into the wilderness. He sat down under a broom tree and prayed that he might die. He said, ‘I have had enough! LORD, take my life, for I’m no better than my fathers.’ Then he lay down and slept under the broom tree…”

REFLECTIONS ON TODAY’S BIBLE VERSE(S):

Our emotions are the spice of life. They aren’t incidental. They are God’s gift that enables us to deeply experience each moment that we live.

In each of our lives, there will be incredible highs and devastating lows. There will be times of celebration and times of mourning.

Ecclesiastes 3:4 (CSB): “a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance;”

Emotions are not a result of our fallen nature. Adam and Eve experienced emotions when they were in the Garden of Eden. And it is incredibly eye-opening to read through the Gospels and observe each of the emotions that Jesus experienced, too.

But, there are many principles that come into play regarding our emotions. Here is one of them:

Principle: What goes up must come down.

Simply put, each person has an emotional default disposition. Some people tend to be closer to the upbeat, happy side of the scale and others tend to be closer to the solemn, sad side of the scale. But, everyone has a default line that their emotions tend to hang around.

When something wonderful happens and our emotional experience is substantially higher than our default, you had better prepare for the plunge after the high. It’s the low you feel after a dream vacation or something of the sort. The low will plunge below your emotional default line to make up for the high you just experienced as your emotions try to get back to your emotional default.

This also applies to our spiritual journey. When we go through a time when God moves powerfully in our life, or in our family, or in our church, and we are saturated with happiness and excitement at what He is doing, you had better prepare to eventually hit a low as your emotions try to get back to their equilibrium.

This is what we see in today’s reading. We hear Elijah hitting an incredible low. In fact, he was so low that he was asking God to kill him. Life was so bleak for Elijah that he would rather die than see another day. So, he did what so many depressed people do … he went to sleep.

1 Kings 19:3-5 (CSB): “Then Elijah became afraid and immediately ran for his life. When he came to Beer-sheba that belonged to Judah, he left his servant there, but he went on a day’s journey into the wilderness. He sat down under a broom tree and prayed that he might die. He said, ‘I have had enough! LORD, take my life, for I’m no better than my fathers.’ Then he lay down and slept under the broom tree…”

So, we are looking at the low in Elijah’s emotional experience. What set him up for this? What was the super-high that exhausted his emotional tank that sent him plunging to such a low?

1 Kings 18!

It is in 1 Kings 18 that we see Elijah standing courageously and triumphantly on Mount Carmel. He stood as one man against hundreds of prophets of Baal. He prayed and fire miraculously came down from Heaven. And then he administered capital punishment upon the prophets of Baal whose actions and teachings had led thousands of unsuspecting followers to a fiery eternity in Hell.

Conclusion

As you consider this principle and how it might play out in your own life, simply realize that when God allows you to experience a wonderful season of grace and victory, allow yourself to feel the inevitable low that will come soon thereafter. Don’t think that you have sinned when it happens. Just make sure that you exercise faith by continuing to trust the Lord even when you are in “the valley of the shadow of death.”

Emotions are wonderful. They are the spice of life. Without them, life would be empty. But, we must learn the rules of how they work and then operate within those parameters.