Scripture Study: 1 Kings 19:1-21
I’m not sure how my words will find you when you read them, but I pray that they find you well and bring you hope and perspective.
I recently read an article in the Associated Press which stated that more than 120,000 US kids had caregivers die during the pandemic.
As I reflected on this article and began to ponder the content of it, I could hear the Lord speak these words to me, and this is what He said:
“Seneca, I know them all by name, and I know all about the details of their circumstances.”
He went on further and reminded me of the sentiment that He and I share together. You see, my wife and I have been involved in ministry for a number of years, some of them right down through our childhood years.
I’ve never lost sight of this sentiment as He has blessed my wife and me with opportunities to minister to the forgotten, the homeless, and the hopeless.
For years I have known that when I come in contact with the homeless, I come in contact with doctors, lawyers, and world changers. In fact, I have even known that cures for some of our most deadly illnesses can be found in the hearts and minds of those who may live within these circumstances. These people are gifted, and they, too, are assets to our community. They are not powerless; they just have found themselves in a hard and challenging place. You see, we all can lose ourselves sometimes along the way.
One doesn’t have to be homeless to be homeless, nor do they have to be completely hopeless to be without hope. So many, in fact, know the feeling of homelessness and hopelessness because they themselves have never been made to feel at home. They are depressed, broken, and afraid. But I do believe that the powerless can be empowered and reminded of their strength, just like Elijah, a man of great strength and power, had to be reminded and encouraged of his.
Elijah was a man of great strength and power, despite his weak moment. So, judge not with a stigma, lest you be judged, because one will never know the true contents of a book by only reading a chapter.
In the previous chapter, Elijah had just been courageous before he encountered fear in the next. But his fear didn’t make him weak; it simply made him human.
The only thing demonic about Elijah’s experience with anxiety and depression was the behavior of Jezebel, the one who was his attacker – and the only thing demonic about someone’s experience with mental health is a stigma surrounding it because people shouldn’t be attacked for hurting, people shouldn’t be attacked for being broken, and people shouldn’t be attacked for being depressed.
I would now like to speak to the hurting, broken, and depressed.
Life is a journey of many steps, and you sometimes can’t control what you encounter along the way. You may know bravery in one moment and fear in another. I pray and hope you know that’s okay, too. When your journey becomes too much, the Lord will refresh and restore your soul just like He did for Elijah, and just like the Lord your Shepherd promised He would do for you in Psalm 23 verse 3.
Dear reader, God won’t be absent and He won’t be removed when your journey becomes too much. He sees your brokenness and understands why you are hurting. He also knows you by name and the details of your circumstances. So, if you are broken, hurting, and depressed, know this: You are not alone, and it is my prayer that this column will make you feel as though you have a place to belong and somewhere to call home.
I pray and hope that you will continue to read the written content and stay connected with us over the next few weeks.
Blessings and favor to you until next time and until we meet again. ❤️🙏🏿
Share your story and prayer requests below or at SenecaHoward.com/contact, and our team will be sure to keep you lifted in our prayers.
P.S., Yours Truly,
The Writer Seneca Howard
About Seneca Howard
Seneca Howard is a pastor, author, mentor, and motivational speaker who inspires the lives of others through crisis ministry, counsel, and personal development.