Elijah Meets God

God said,
‘Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord,
for the Lord is about to pass by.’
Now there was a great wind,
so strong that it was splitting mountains and
breaking 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;
and after the earthquake a fire,
but the Lord was not in the fire;
and after the fire a sound of sheer silence.

When Elijah heard it,
he wrapped his face in his mantle and
went out and stood at the entrance of the cave.

Then there came a voice to him that said,
‘What are you doing here, Elijah?’

I Kings 19:11-13
Picture posted at wikigallery.

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About Paul Wharton

I am a cradle Catholic, a native West Virginian, and a priest since April 24, 1982. Spiritual Direction has made a tremendous difference in my life and I encourage people to try it out. My motto is "Progress not perfection." I am grateful that God has done for me what I could not do for myself.
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4 Responses to Elijah Meets God

  1. Thank you for this post, Father. As I sit out here on the porch in my little prayer space, early in the morning, I am contemplating Elijah confronting the mystery of the unknown, which reminds me of my own words: “Where are you, Lord.” And I sense God’s response: “What are you doing here, Bob.” And I am reminded of the mystery of God’s ever-presence, even in the wind, even in the clouds, the fog, the traffic passing by, the medi-vac helicopter about to land at our nearby cardiac center, the awakening birds, the rising sun, the day ahead of me, the next moment, all of it. And when I answer the question for myself, it becomes very apparent that God IS here and the definitive answer to what I am doing here matters not. It only matters that I am here too, in the way that God has made me to be, and that I am gifted with the ability to sense the presence, an awesome presence that I do not have to fully understand. Thanks again, Father, for helping to awaken me today.

  2. God knows what is best for us but we sometimes especially when down and out do not understand what we should be doing. We need to sit in silence for awhile and think about how God encouraged Elijah with his divine presence. Think about the Spiritualiry of God, sense he is present and listen in silence to what is going on around you, you will be lifted by the Holy Spirit.

  3. Paul Wharton says:

    Good insight, Barbara. If you read what comes before this encounter, you will discover that Elijah was severely depressed in the aftermath of his battle with the prophets of Baal. A funny story, too.

  4. Matt Smith says:

    I mentioned it on Facebook, but I should probably put it here, too. I’ve found this to be a profound bit of scripture to read prayerfully (several times, in the quiet) before contemplating the icon of Elijah with the ravens. The icon is from a different part of his story, but this passage just fits it so well. There’s a loneliness in his face that has to be experienced instead of explained.

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