Devotional – Wednesday, March 25, 2020

We Have a Situation Here
Scripture Readings:
1 Kings 17:8-16, Matthew 14:13-21, Proverbs 3:5-6

 
Whenever this phrase is heard, “We have a situation here,” it generally means that something is terribly wrong and we must go into damage control mode and do something. Let’s consider three situations: one from the Old Testament, one from the New Testament, and third, our situation today.
 
Situation # 1: The Widow of Zarephath
In this story we learn that the prophet, Elijah, is sent by God in a time of famine to save a widow and her child from starvation and death. As Elijah approaches Zarephath, he meets her outside the city’s gate where she is gathering firewood. Her “to do” list is to find two sticks, bake a cake for herself and son with the last handful of flour and few drops of oil, eat it and die. Elijah says to her, “Hold on! First, make a small cake for me, bring it to me, then do the same for you and your son.” If she does so, there is a promise – her meal and oil will outlast the drought. The scripture reveals that in faith she believed God’s promise as spoken by Elijah. She baked the small cake and gave it first to God’s prophet, His plan for hers. And as promised, God gave back to her a miracle of endless provision plus hope.
 
Situation # 2: The Disciples facing a multitude.
The Book of Matthew records that, after the beheading of John the Baptist, Jesus departed by boat to a remote desert area. When the people heard about it they followed after him by foot from surrounding cities. The multitude that eventually gathered numbered five thousand men, perhaps fifteen thousand counting women and children and Jesus being filled with compassion healed the sick among them all. As evening began to set in and as the distance home was far, the disciples began to realize, “We have a situation here.” With a food inventory of only five loaves and two fish, despair could set in with darkness, and a hungry multitude could become a mob. What did the disciples plan to do? Send the people home. But Jesus said, “Give me first the five loaves and fish.” He blessed the food and gave it back to the disciples, His plan for theirs, a plan with a miracle attached.
 
Situation # 3: A Global Pandemic
Yes, something is terribly wrong. We have a situation here. Damage appears beyond control and unending. That which I had, it seems I have no more. Up is down. Right is wrong. Confusion reigns in the public domain and fear privately invades hearts and minds. And as for my plan, do I worry night and day? Will I send away the hungry and sick? Do I, in despair, make a small cake, eat it and plan to die? No! Jesus has given us a new contract, a plan with promise. Come unto me you who are and burdened, he said, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28) For God has not given us the spirit of fear: but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)
 
Thank you, Lord, for reminding me once again that, if I seek you with all my heart and lean not unto my own understanding, you surely shall direct my paths. Your plans for mine with miracles attached. Amen.
Offered by Dak McInnis

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