When the prophet Elijah fled the wicked queen Jezebel, he traveled 40 days and nights until he reached Mount Horeb (1 Kings 19:8). There, in the shelter of a cave, he heard God — not in the mighty wind, earthquake, or fire, but in a gentle whisper.
Following on from yesterday’s little and large, David and Goliath episode, today we find another 40 day trial faced by the Old Testament prophet, Elijah.
I wonder how many of us have had periods in our lives when faced extended periods of fear and distress. So often, it is the small almost insignificant things that brings us solace and safety.
A mother was having an exasperating morning. The phone rang constantly, she had washed a contact lens down the drain, our washing machine had died, and her dog, Princess, sat on the decking outside and barked incessantly. Her head reeled with an impending headache.
She called to her young daughter, "Anna, please go tell Princess to be quiet!"
"But Mom," she pleaded with conviction, "Princess is singing 'Jesus Loves Me'--I just know it!"
Cheered by her insight, the mum realised that God speaks in different ways; what she considered noise, her daughter saw as one of God's creatures praising Him. We don't have to be inside a quiet, peaceful sanctuary to learn from Him. We just have to be listening.
Perhaps we need to sing quietly.
Drop thy still dews of quietness,
till all our strivings cease;
take from our souls the strain and stress,
and let our ordered lives confess
the beauty of thy peace.
Breathe through the heats of our desire
thy coolness and thy balm;
let sense be dumb, let flesh retire;
speak through the earthquake, wind, and fire,
O still, small voice of calm!