When Elijah bravely and boldly faced the priestly gathering upon the high place, it was no tame task in which he participated. Prayer is wild.

Wild living in a state of nature; not tame
showing lack of restraint or control

Our God is in the business of wildly bestowing grace upon His children. When we look at the days of Elijah, as laid forth in the pages of 1 Kings 17-19, we see a man engaged in a raw and earthy relationship with his Maker. Elijah spoke wild prayers to the God of Heaven and of Earth. We, too, are called to just such a relationship.

After issuing a divine edict of drought upon the land, Elijah was instructed to retreat to the ravines in the wilderness of Kerith to be fed by ravens. When the brooks dried, he joined with a widow and her son in Zeraphath. While staying in this home, the son died. Elijah’s prayer?

“O Lord my God, have you brought calamity even upon the widow with whom I sojourn, by killing her son? God my God, put breath back into this boy’s body!” (1 Kings 17:20-21 ESV & The Message)

And God gave breath.

The Coming Storm (New Mexico), UaMV, 2006

The Coming Storm (New Mexico), UaMV, 2006

Wild? Indeed!

Elijah’s next task? Confront a calloused king with the good word of rain to come upon the parched land. But it was not only the earth that had dried and cracked; the hearts of Israel had once again hardened against the way of the one true God – real life had withered. Thus, Elijah called for a spiritual showdown upon the heights of Mount Carmel so that God’s children might again know Him as Lord. Do you remember the story?

450 prophets of Baal cannot conjure a single spark. Elijah, taking twelve stones, repairs the altar of the Lord, which had been thrown down. After having prepared the bull upon the wood, he calls thrice for four jars of precious water, and in what might seem an act of carelessness to most of those gathered, has them poured out. Then, he prays simply …

Let it be known this day that You are God. (1 Kings 18:36 ESV)

And so fire fell – consuming the water and wood, the sacrifice and stones, even the dust and the hardened hearts of the people. The false prophets are slaughtered and those gathered, midst a coming rain, remember the Lord … He is God.

What wild prayer!

Elijah risked the wilderness. His prayers were far from tame; his spirit, gripped by a fierce faith; his hem, likely singed by fire. What about you? Are you living an adventurous relationship with the living God? Do you greet the day with expentancy and end it in wonder at His wild ways?

Mark Buchanan, pastor and author from the west coast of Canada writes in The Holy Wild

I have discovered, as I hoped and feared in my younger days, that God is no drab pedant, meddling and puttering, but the Lion of Judah, the Lord of the Holy Wild. The God who, when He speaks or shows Himself, stirs in me two impulses at once: to run from Him and to run to Him.

The way of faith, of following Jesus, is no tame task. Enter the ‘Holy Wild’ and watch the glory of the Lord fall upon that place.

Reflect On 1 Kings 17-19
Praise God that His ways are wild.
Offer Thanks for the adventures in life.
Confess the times when you have tried to tame God and His work in this world.
Ask God for a fiery faith.
that you might know the wildness of Jesus (see Revelation 1)
Comment: In what ways has the broader Christian culture of today been tamed?
How might we re-enter the ‘Holy Wild’?

Other posts in this Prayer series:
Now This Is PrayerDifficult PrayerDangerous PrayerInquisitional PrayerRevolutionary PrayerThe Sin of Prayerlessness