Thus we see Elijah’s despair and his sense of being all alone. And some among the faithful today struggle also with this to one degree or another.Msgr. Charles Pope's message is one that I've reminded myself of often recently. It is easy to feel alone, defeated, and as if we are tiny beings pounding against an infinitely high wall.
But note how God answers Elijah.
Yet I have seven thousand in Israel—all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal and all whose mouths have not kissed him. (1 Kings 19:19)In other words, you are far from alone Elijah. I have seven thousand like you though your despairing eyes see them not!
God then says,
“Go back the way you came, and go to the Desert of Damascus. When you get there, anoint Hazael king over Aram. Also, anoint Jehu son of Nimshi king over Israel, and anoint Elisha son of Shaphat from Abel Meholah to succeed you as prophet. Jehu will put to death any who escape the sword of Hazael, and Elisha will put to death any who escape the sword of Jehu..” (1 Kings 19:15-18)In other words, find these seven thousand and go rebuild my people, go rebuild my Church. Now is not a time for despair, now is a time for action. Gather them, appoint leaders and I will be with you to win this battle and reestablish the faith in glory.
In speaking this way to Elijah, the Lord also speaks to us. Though all seem in decline, and losses mount, Yet God still has “seven thousand” who have not bent the knee to Baal of this present evil age, who have not departed. And from this faithful remnant he expects us to draw hope and continue our work.
There have been times when the “practicing” Church got very small. On Good Friday all but five had fled: Mary of Magdala, Mary Clopas, Mary Solome, Mary, Mother of Jesus and John. And there they were with Jesus. They even added a sixth that day, the repentant thief. Small, and things looked pretty grim, but still the Church at worship, looking to Christ her head.
Yes, like Elijah we can sometimes think there is little hope, that we are all but alone. But it was not so for him, and it is not so for us. God always has his “seven thousand.”
But that is far from the truth. We are some of God's seven thousand. We must just stand up for what is right. God will bring the harvest, whether now or later. Stand up and trust in God. That is our job.
Go read the entire piece because there is much more than what is shared above.