DO YOU HEAR THAT? Andy Hollifield 8-2-18
1 Kings 18:41 And Elijah said unto Ahab, Get thee up, eat and drink; for there is a sound of abundance of rain.
Do you hear that? The sound of abundance of rain. I began to think about some of the things that Elijah heard. I hadn’t really noticed it before but the things Elijah heard encouraged him and at times, discouraged him. I have read the story of the contest on Mount Carmel a lot of times and even preached out of this section of scripture more than once. That’s what I love about trying to listen to the leadership of the Holy Ghost. You can always find something you haven’t heard or seen before if you just listen to him. We know the story of the contest and how Elijah prayed 63 words and the fire of the Lord fell. We have also read about how that Elijah took the prophets of Baal to the brook and slew them. It is the chain of events following the contest that I want to look at.
In verse 41 Elijah tells Ahab in so many words, “You better hurry and eat cause it is fixing to come a gully washer.” I am not trying to change God’s word but I believe the key words in that verse are “sound” and “abundance.” What is amazing if you stop and think about it is that there wasn’t a cloud in the sky anywhere but yet Elijah heard “a sound of abundance of rain.” You have to keep in mind that there had been a drought for three and a half years. Elijah was a wanted man by Ahab who had searched every country and kingdom looking for him because he had proclaimed the drought three and a half years earlier. Now, Ahab had just seen the fire of God fall and consume the sacrifices and the rocks of the altar. He also knew that 850 prophets had been slain; 400 from the groves and 450 prophets of Baal. It is curious to me that after seeing all the works of the Lord, Ahab apparently was still clueless as to what he was witnessing. I don’t understand how that anyone could witness what Ahab seen and still go for a picnic. You would have thought after being witness to those things that he would have been scared to death and looking for a place to repent. Instead he was looking for a place to eat.
While he was eating, Elijah was on top of the mountain praying. He sent his servant seven times to see if he could see any sign of rain. Six times the servant came back and said he saw nothing. If I had of been his servant, I probably would have asked Elijah if I could just sit up there and wait until I seen something and then I would let him know. On the seventh time, the servant said, just a little cloud about the size of a man’s hand. Upon hearing the report, he immediately began to rush Ahab to get off of that mountain before he got stranded by the rain. This was while the sun was still shining and only one little cloud in the sky. The main point I want to make is that sometimes you have to believe and act accordingly before you see God move and before your circumstances even change. If you listen close in those times, you can hear the sound of abundance of blessings that God is fixing to rain down on you.
This was of course after he had listened all day to the noise of the false prophets. Then he heard the “sound of abundance of rain.” After that, the messenger came and delivered the message to Elijah from Jezebel. Then after Elijah went on the run, he later fell asleep under a Juniper tree while praying to die. The next thing he heard was the voice of an angel telling him to arise and eat. Again he heard the angel waking him to eat because it was going to be the last meal for the next forty days. The next thing he heard was in chapter 19 verse 9 when the Lord spoke to him while he was in a cave on Mt. Horeb and asked him what he was doing there. After he made his petition to the Lord, God had him to step out onto the mountain. The next things Elijah heard and seen was a strong wind that even broke the rocks into pieces. After that it was an earthquake and then a fire but God wasn’t in any of those things. The next thing he heard loud and clear was a still small voice. That got his attention and he wrapped his face in his mantle and God asked him again; “What doest thou here, Elijah?” He answered God and was then set straight by the Lord and received instructions for the rest of his days. It was a good while later before Elijah was taken up but you find him being obedient to God’s call for the rest of his days.
Do you hear that? Do you hear all of the noise of the world that has seemingly completely abandoned God? Do you hear the genuine hate for anything pertaining to God? Listen closer and you can hear a sound of abundance of blessings that God is going to give you as you stay with him and don’t quit. Oh sure; you will hear the storms and the wind and the earthquakes and the fire. We will always have them. But listen even a little closer, over the roar of everything else, and you will hear the thunder of the voice of the Lord whispering and asking you “What are you doing here?” If you are trying to hide out in a spiritual cave and just wait on the rapture to take us all home, you still have work to do. God hasn’t told you or any of us to find a place to “hole up” until he returns but rather to “occupy.” He knows your fears and frustrations and your hurt and disappointment at the hands of others. He already knows that you question in your mind whether or not it’s worth it anymore. But, if you listen real close, you can still hear that thunderous, still, small, voice. God will speak to your heart to calm you if you will let him. Shhh! Settle down and listen. Do you hear that? Have a blessed day in the Lord!!!