A man was walking along the street when he saw a crowd of people running toward him. He stopped one of them and asked, "What's going on?" The runner replied breathlessly, "A lion has escaped from the city zoo." "Oh no! Which way is it heading?" "Well, you don't think we're chasing it, do you?"
Then He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake; 12 and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice. 13 So it was, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood in the entrance of the cave. Suddenly a voice came to him, and said, “What are you doing here Elijah?”
I Kings 19:11-13
Elijah was a great man of God, but after a great victory on Mt. Carmel, he found himself hiding in a cave afraid for his life because the evil queen Jezebel had threatened his life. It was there in that cave that he heard from God. He didn’t hear from God in the wind that broke rocks into pieces, or in the earthquake, or in the forest fire, but it was a still small voice. There are so many loud voices in our world calling us to do that, go there, buy that, read this, watch that. They are so loud and dramatic, it’s hard not to follow their orders, but none of them lead us closer to the Lord, His peace or His purpose for our lives. The activity may not be evil, but if God is not leading us in that direction, it becomes evil.
Do you ever slow down and just listen to God? What is He saying? When Elijah stopped and listened to the still small voice, the Lord asked him what he was doing there. His reply implied that he was tired, he felt lonely and isolated (go figure, he was sitting in a cave by himself), and he felt threatened. He had been listening to the wrong voices. The Lord set him straight: he was not alone, there were over 7,000 that he could stand with. It was the difference between working “for God” and working with God. Our Father calls us to come to Him, to fellowship with Him and to work with Him. So, are we listening and are we doing it. We get crossways when we start trying “to do something for God” or we replace obedience with our good intentions. The Lord gave Elijah clear direction, but he had to get to the place where he would listen. Are you listening? Which way are you headed?