In the past two weeks I have become even more convinced and even more convicted about such things as convincing and conviction. God is showing me almost every day that devotion and commitment to Him come from being convinced that He is who He says He is, convinced that His ways are better than mine, and committed and convicted to live my life and make my choices based on those truths.
Just yesterday I was preparing a lesson for a friend of mine who leads a local Girl Scout troop. Her girls are going camping this weekend, and I was overjoyed when she asked me if I could help her come up with a lesson for them because the girls had told her they wanted to have church while they were on their trip. They didn’t want to give up meeting with the Lord while they were on their camp out. We were both thrilled because this idea was initiated by the scouts. I wanted to choose a lesson that had a camping feel to it, and decided on Elijah and the prophets of Baal. After all, there aren’t many better camp fire stories out there than this one?? God has the best fire starting skills, EV-AH!!
If you don’t know the story, you can check it out at I Kings 18. But what I want to blow up before you today is how just before the big showdown goes down, Elijah says these words, “How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal is God, follow Him.” At the heart of that challenge Elijah is asking them, “Who are you really committed to? Where do your convictions lie? It’s time to choose, people. You can’t keep sitting on the fence.” You see, God’s people were trying to serve two masters. They believed in God, but they believed in “gods”, too. And Scripture makes it abundantly clear in both the old and the new testaments that those who follow Him, do not have the option of fence sitting in this area.
And today, just like back then, we keep missing that truth. We continue to live in such a way that reflects we are people who are not convinced, convicted or committed. We think we can be devoted to everything, and we think it’s okay. The things we are living for, the things we are devoted to are useless according to the book of Ecclesiastes. The only things that will last are the things built upon the truth of Christ and our right responses to that truth.
“For what good is it if a man gains the whole world, but loses his soul?” (Matthew 16:26) Or what good is it if you get the promotion, or your kid makes the traveling team, or has the best grades or you serve on every committee in the land if you aren’t devoted to Him.
I love how Elijah just laid it out there, “If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal is God, follow Him.” His words were then followed with the action and the power of God so that there would be no doubt in the minds of anyone who the real God was and who they should follow. Then, after the fire of the Lord fell, the people knew—yes, they were convinced, they were convicted and they were again committed as they cried out together, “The LORD—He is God! The LORD—He is God.” If you have, by chance, forgotten that truth, it’s time to remember and live out the cry, “The LORD—He is God. The LORD—He is God!”