A Small Cloud & A Storm… When the Answer doesn’t look like an Answer.

1 Kings 18:43-45 “And he said to his servant, Go up now, look toward the sea. And He went up, and looked, and said, There is nothing. And he said, go again seven times. (44) And it came to pass at the seventh time, that he said, Behold, there ariseth a little cloud out of the sea, like a man’s hand. And he said, Go up, say unto Ahab, Prepare thy chariot, and get thee down, that the rain stop thee not. (45) And it came to pass in the mean while, that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was great rain…”

Imagine trudging up a mountain seven times looking for the promised rain – abundant rain – and seeing nothing six times. Then on the seventh seeing a cloud, but only the size of your hand. It would be hard to see abundant rain in a cloud so small.

Would you question the man of God? Would you discount the cloud? Would your faith be enough to recognize the provision of God, even in something so small?

Both Elijah and his servant recognized the potential of that cloud. Little is much, when God is in it. Life’s greatest victories have the humblest beginnings.

  • Gideon’s army of 300 victorious over the Midianites
  • A smooth stone took down a giant and liberated a nation.
  • A little meal and oil fed a prophet, a widow, and her son.
  • A little boy’s lunch fed 5,000 people.
  • The touch of a garment healed the woman with the issue of blood.

Jesus told us that faith as small as a mustard seed (Have you ever seen one? it’s tiny!) could move mountains. If God has given you a promise, hold onto it, praying, searching, but don’t disregard that small cloud on your horizon, it could be the humble beginnings of the answer God is sending your way.

As the Elijah’s servant is speaking to Ahab, the sky grew dark, the wind began to blow, storm clouds that had grown from that hand size cloud now covered the sky. The Abundant Rain that God had promised but it came in storm. Trees may have been blown over, a fence or barn damaged, roads may have been washed out. The storm brought not only rain but damage, destruction, inconvenience, aggravation. Someone may have spent the next day repairing a fence, clearing trees & debris, fixing a road or gathering scattered flocks.

But God kept His promise: He sent rain. A grateful farmer spent the day preparing the plow, gathering seed, harnessing the oxen. The owner of the vineyard worked the soil around the roots of the plants that had long ago dried up. A shepherd moved his thirsty flock to a now flowing stream or river. Cisterns and wells were cleaned and filled.

When faced with a storm on our horizon, how often do we begin to beseech heaven for deliverance? As our life begins to be buffeted by wind, our daily habits and routines upset by rain, how often do we ask God, “Why? Why are we in this storm?”. Could it be, that the storm is exactly the thing we so desperately need? Can you find the blessing in the storm? When it’s the rain that waters the fields of our hearts, refreshes our minds, and quenches the thirst of the flock, why are we so quick to desire the sunshine again?

If you find yourself in the midst of a storm – the sky is black, wind howling, rain falling – have faith. God knows where you are, He is the master of the storm and it may be His master plan for you to endure it. So sing in the rain, have faith God will bring you through and you will be all the better for it. It may not be the answer we imagined, but He knows. So let go and let God…

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