1 Kings 17:18 “You have come to me to bring my iniquity to remembrance.”

1 Kings 18:17 “Is this you, you troubler of Israel?”

Observation: The contrast of heart attitude in these two passages could hardly be more profound. The widow of 1 Kings 17 was a pagan widow to whom Elijah had been sent to receive sustenance from during the famine. She had been willing to use the last of her resources to feed Elijah before she and her son would die of hunger. In response to her obedience, God had kept her supply of oil and flour miraculously replenished through more than three years of famine.  But after three years of living by the supernatural provision of the Lord, her son became ill and died, at which time she said, “You have come to bring my iniquity to remembrance.”

In 1 Kings 18, evil King Ahab had been seeking to kill Elijah for three years, since the day famine had begun in response to Elijah’s declaration in 1 Kings 17:1, “There shall be neither dew nor rain these years except by my word.”  When Ahab finally saw Elijah three years later, he cast blame with these words, “Is this you, you troubler of Israel?”

Application: Ponder for a moment the different heart responses of these two individuals. In losing her son, the widow was losing her future security, yet she didn’t look for someone else to blame. She understood there was iniquity in her life, and Elijah was serving as a mirror to bring it to her remembrance.

Ahab, on the other hand, this most evil of kings, gave no thought to the reality that the calamity befalling the nation was due to his leadership. He was a blamer.

I am humbled by the Lord’s invitation for me to look honestly in the mirror held by Holy Spirit—a mirror He uses to test my heart response to what I see reflected there. Will I respond as the widow, agreeing that there is iniquity only He can cleanse, or will I respond as one who will once again blame my circumstances on others?

Prayer: Father God, You are faithful to hold a mirror before me continually.  Search my heart, O lord; reveal the iniquity that’s there, that I might yield it to You and be cleansed and renewed in Your presence. Forgive me for any thought of blaming anyone else for my circumstances, Lord, and let me be renewed today by the power of Your love.