When the humble see it they will be glad; you who seek God, let your hearts revive. ~Psalm 69:32
A friend called to ask me what the Bible says about suicide. I had to do some digging and still have as many questions as answers.
At the same time, I remembered the reviving of a plant that was leveled by a hail storm a few years ago. I had a Gerbera daisy in a large pot on the back patio. All that was left after the hail storm were roots and a little green.
After feeding and coaxing it, the plant came back completely and bloomed until late September.
As I thought about the suicide question, I realized that a dead person cannot be revived as my plant was. But, if we have faith and will exercise it in our despair, God can revive us, as well.
The Bible reports Elijah wanted to die in 1 Kings 19. After he had killed the prophets of Baal and King Ahab had told the wicked Jezebel about it, she sent a messenger to him saying, “So may the gods do to me and more also, if I do not make your life as the life of one of them by this time tomorrow.” 1 Kings 19:2
He was afraid for his life! “He arose and ran for his life and came to Beersheba, which belongs to Judah, and left his servant there. But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness and came and sat down under a broom tree. And he asked that he might die, saying, “It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life, for I am no better than my fathers.” 1 Kings 19:3-4
Elijah was despairing in his fear of Jezebel and his exhaustion from running after a stressful day of challenging the prophets of Baal and then killing them. For the record, they were enemies of God who needed to go.
The next verses show us the grace of God. Elijah was able to sleep. Then, God sent an angel who woke him up, “And he looked, and behold, there was at his head a cake baked on hot stones and a jar of water. And he ate and drank and lay down again.” 1 Kings 19:6
He was still tired so he slept some more. Then, 1 Kings 19:7, “And the angel of the LORD came again a second time and touched him and said, “Arise and eat, for the journey is too great for you.”
Sleep, eat, drink, sleep, eat, drink. God offered him enough food, water, and sleep to sustain him for the next 40 days according to verse 8! God revived him!
Jezebel scared Elijah so much he thought death would be better. It looked like hail had taken the life of my plant. Sinful people and difficult circumstances hail down on all of us at some point. Though depression can keep us from seeing things clearly, as children of God we can, by the power of the Holy Spirit, receive the same kind of ministry from God as Elijah did. God gave him what he knew He needed in his despair!
He will give us what we need to revive us from the storms of life – and they do come. His care for Elijah, a faithful servant, shows us how God cares for His faithful children. When we believe it is people who lift us from the depths of the pit we will be disappointed. When we trust God, he is faithful to care for us.
If you are not in the storm right now, could you be one, as a servant of God, who angelically provides what a friend in the storm needs?