When Your Drought Is Fierce

Gwen SmithBlog, Trials, Trusting God, Uncategorized 45 Comments

The Old Testament prophet Elijah is a guy I can relate to.

God asked him to do and say some difficult things. He also got an all-access pass to the God-Is-Awesome show as he experienced epic miracles at the hand of the Almighty. Even so, at one point he became gripped by fear and tried to run away from his problems. He knew exhaustion and sank into a pit of depression that darkened his hope. He felt alone, yet was provided for when God sent angels to care for his every need. At times Elijah found God in grandiose shouts and flames, but also heard from Him in a humble whisper. And through all his highs and lows, he loved and served God.

Yes. I can relate to this guy. He’s my kind of people.

The story of Elijah begins in 1 King 17 when God sent the prophet to give a bold message to King Ahab, the reigning King of Israel who had been doing evil in the eyes of the Lord.

“Now Elijah the Tishbite, from Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, ‘As the LORD, the God of Israel lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years except at my word.’” (1 Kings 17:1)

Then, at the prompting of the Lord, Elijah went into hiding – first in the Kerith Ravine.

At the ravine, just east of the Jordan, God miraculously made sure His prophet had water from a brook and food from ravens. How crazy is that? Birds brought dinner to the man every night.


Love it.

God is Jehovah Jireh, our Provider.

I think it’s important to point out here that even Elijah, God’s faithful servant and great prophet, had to endure the drought. He was provided for, but not kept from the strain and struggle just because he was living for God. Deep thirst, hard times, and hunger impacted Elijah’s days just like those of the rebellious Israelites. Just like yours and mine. Jesus spoke of this reality in Matthew 5:45 when He said that God “makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”

Droughts and difficulties are a reality for all of us.

Turning again to the story, we see that back at the palace King Ahab was furious about the drought. So much so, that he searched high and low for Elijah. (1 Kings 18:10) But in spite of Ahab’s efforts, God kept Elijah hidden for about three years and used a drought to wring dry the rebellious nation of Israel in order to get their attention so they would turn back to Him.

After the brook dried up at the Kerith Ravine due to lack of rain, the Lord sent Elijah to the home of a God-fearing single mom… a widow in Zarephath of Sidon. Circumstances were bleak in the land. Crops had dried up and food was extremely scarce. Yet, in spite of the desperate times, God had a fresh and fruitful mission for Elijah.

The Lord didn’t simply want Elijah to survive the drought, He wanted him to serve and trust Him in the arid, arduous trenches of it. God used the drought to lead Elijah to new places of ministry – places that brought hope and life to others – places where he had to walk with fresh faith in the unfamiliar.

Holy Father, help me get this and expect this!

Elijah experienced provision, protection, intervention, and direction from God. Day after day, miracle after miracle, hard times came but the Lord was with him in and through it all. Just like He is for you and me.

As I consider this my mind scrolls through a few fingerprints of God’s faithfulness and provision in my own life…

  • He protected me back in high school when I wrecked my parent’s car.
  • He was with us when my son fractured his skull and broke his jaw in three places … then during the seven-hour reconstructive surgery, and the six-week wired-shut-healing.
  • He was our Provision year after year through the strains of job loss, job changes, family loss, health challenges, and cross-country moves.

God is faithful, faithful, faithful.

Are you or a loved one in a season of drought?

As you cry out to Jesus, EXPECT to experience God’s grace, provision, and peace even in the times you face challenges that you were not wanting or expecting. And trust that when the dry of your drought is fierce, God is inviting you to serve and trust Him in the arid, arduous trenches of it.

You are not alone, friend.

“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”
(Hebrews 10:23)

Dear Lord, Thank You for being my protector, my help, and my refuge. When times are desperate, I know that I can trust You to provide the wisdom, provision, comfort, and grace I need to endure. In Jesus’ name, amen.



Has God ever given you a fresh and fruitful mission in the middle of a drought? What did that look like? Would you have had the opportunity to impact others had it not been for the drought? Why or why not?

Feel like today’s devotion was written just for you? It was. God made sure you read it and I’d sure love to pray with you. Remember, my blog is not a monologue, it’s a dialog. Let’s talk about it. Tell me where this finds you today. Click here to join me on my blog wall for a time of prayer.

Blessings and Love,



The Bible tells us that God is able to do above and beyond what we can ask or imagine. So why do we rarely pause to dream big dreams, think big thoughts, or expect God to do great things through us? My book, I Want It ALL, will ignite a fire in your heart to experience more faith, more power, and more impact. More of Jesus. All of Jesus. Everything that God has for you. Order yours today from Amazon, or get a signed copy directly from me here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments 45

  1. Thank you for this. It hit home. I co-own a shop in a very small town where I have roots. I had moved away planning never to return, and for years God gave me dreams, planting in my spirit that I would be back. Now I am, and I know it’s where I am supposed to be, but if things don’t pick up extremely soon, I don’t know what we are going to do. We have been losing money for months now, and I am trying to be patient, waiting for God to show us if and how we should pivot to make things better. We just opened an air b and b on the upper level, and that has been our saving grace. So praise God that part is steady! Along with struggling there, my husband, who is supportive, as long as it makes sense on paper, has not been wildly happy about the it being so slow, if only because I have to drive 35 minutes each way to get there and home again. It doesn’t make sense on paper. BUT. I know it is where I am supposed to be. I just don’t know where to go from here. And what direction God wants me to move in. So I have been TRYING to be patient and wait for his timing. I know it is different from my own. Anyways. All that to say. This was needed today, and thank you for sharing.

  2. Since my husband joined Jesus in Heaven, 2 summers ago, Ive had so many different emotions. Drought, was a big one. But God! He will never leave or forsake us. I’m very excited about this new season of my life. Don’t get me wrong, I still grieve for my husband but I no longer in a drought!
    Thank you Gwen! You are a true vessel for Jesus!

  3. Going through a tough time. My husband is a retired pastor, 50 years in ministry and 39 years at the same church as associate and pastor over Pastoral Care. He will be 78 on Monday and is in the beginning stages of dementia with short term memory loss. He has a very strong family history of altzheimers, so we are not totally surprised. It’s just hard to know how to navigate this new normal. God has always been faithful and I know He will continue to be. I’m clinging to that.

  4. Wow, so powerful. I also love that birds fed Elijah. I have a loved one who is in a time of drought and it’s hard to watch. I pray for them, this reminded me though that it’s not without purpose. For my life I am drawn into a new place, college😬 I am excited but what is brewing in my life. Thanks Gwen!

  5. Whew,, Needed to hear this today. As many, I have a grown son, daughter-n-law and granddaughter that I do not have a relationship with. I finally had to walk away and give the situation over to God and fully trusting Him to carry me thru.
    Also, I lost a very good friend of 52 years due to health issues and we laid her to rest yesterday. ✝️🙏❤️ love all you Ladies & GOD LOVES YOU

  6. Life is a struggle, I needed this reminder today as I get up to go teach my precious students. Cancer has left me in pain, chemo has left my stomach a wreck, my finances due to medical bills scare me, BUT GOD, he is as close as the whisper of his name. He gives strength for each day. Thank you for reminding me of his provision this morning. He is a good Father.

  7. My drought is consuming me. It consists of many issues of life. My dad is one. He lives about 4 hours from my house. I am an only child. My dad has Dementia and early Alzheimer’s. Seems to do somewhat good when I am there and his caregiver. Some of my family are on my back to do more for my Dad. Telling me what I should do. My dad wants to stay at his house. I’m.trying to.help him stay there as long as possible as long as he is safe!
    I lost my job in March. Had another till June and since then had a couple of jobs without success. I can’t seem to find the right position. Money is very tight. The many trips to my dad’s hasn’t helped. But were very necessary. So much happening!

    Thank God for the many angels God has sent my way as friends.
    I started a new discipleship class at our church this week. Those always help one way or another.

  8. I am in a season of drought with my relationships with both adult kids. We have had a tough go in life with their fathers suicide. I am waiting in the quiet for movement. My daughter is currently estranged from me.

  9. I needed this today! I am going through bad anxiety that I am trying to fight. My kidneys having been giving me trouble I pray for healing. My Marriage is failing apart and at this time I can’t afford to live alone with the kids. I am struggling to pay for my sons school and all the stuff the kids need me to provide for them. I pray the lord will provide for us.

  10. Hi,I am sidelined and persecuted in my job. I am praying for the Lord to open new doors of opportunity. I need the right people in my life to support me n lift me up . My sister is being plagued by mental illness… praying for a breakthrough for her….I also need to finish my house so I can be more comfortable in my living situation..

  11. Thank you for the message of hope and focusing on the faithfulness of God no matter the challenges before us.
    I ask for prayer for my granddaughter who is trying to sell the house she is living in and the car she is driving since it is attached to a relationship not pleasing to the Lord.
    Thank you
    Angela from NY

  12. I am facing a biopsy on the 18th. My sister died this past January of the same cancer I may be fighting. My family is stressed. I am physically not able to do the housework and cook like I use to. Tomorrow I face a cardio-pulmonary stress test that hopefully will show why my breathing is so bad. I miss my husband (divorced) every day and pray for reconciliation. These are the major droughts in my life right now but you know what I am at peace! I have placed all this in the Lord’s hands and trust Him to do what is best for me and my family. There has even been blessings in getting a divorce and my sister’s illness and passing. God is so very good! Looking forward to His soon return! I’m praying for you, your Mom, and family. May God fill each of you with His peace, joy, and love. Hugs and Godspeed!

  13. Thank you for this. I needed reassurance. My daughter and her 8 month baby is flying from Seattle Wa to Montana and the baby has hearing loss in one ear so I was Leary about the altitude but I know she is in GODS hands and they both will be fine.

  14. I needed this today. We’ve had 9 months of upheaval in our lives. A new home (for us) with seeking contractors and then lots of construction with renovations and many new challenges along the way. Finally construction is done. But we’re still in process of furnishing the house so we are still living out of containers and trying to get settled. We know our problems are strictly first world problems; however, weariness does indeed overcome us at times. I need to be reminded frequently of of God’s continuing provisions.

  15. God’s timing is always perfect.
    I’m running on empty … leading on the front lines of the mental health crisis. God is with me – and working through me – to influence change here in NY.

  16. Our adult son Jesse is who I refer to as our dessert, we adopted him at age 2, was a product of a drug addicted mother, born at 6 months, weighing only 2 lbs. He is adhd, impulsive and oppositional defiant disorder, tough to raise, never finished school. Long story short, been in and out of prison and jail half of his 42 years. So.
    I know drought. He just got out of jail again so praying he gets it this time.

  17. Thank you, I had a health scare, plus my grandson was very sick God miraculous healed him, then my health scare , I am trusting God by faith for my healing financially its not there so I am standing on the word of by His stripes I am healed I have this devotion 1kings 17 this week and I have been drawing from it. This one encourages and strengthen my faith more in God. God bless thank you

  18. Oh Gwen, did this ever hit me right where I live. I lost my husband, best friend, and so many other descriptions on July 8! Never thought I’d be at this place and I don’t like it, but God has been faithful to sustain me, lift up my head when I couldn’t, and be my everything. Tears are never far away and I love that verse about God putting all of our tears in a bottle! All I can say is, that must be a really big bottle! Please pray for my family, which now consists of me and my two grown children, Daniel and Erin. They have been struggling. I was able to speak this truth to both of them separately. They mentioned or I found out they were afraid, so I was able to say “you don’t need to be afraid, you need to know without a doubt that you have Jesus in your heart and you will see him again.” I felt those words were from God because I would just never say that to each one of them on my own!

  19. My drought is my daughters prolonged substance abuse. At times she becomes delusional and has thoughts that I am not her mother and she thinks I am someway sabotaging her life. It is the devil, clearly. I am worn down by her abuse towards me and feel like there is no end in sight. I know to trust God and to be patient,. Today my spirit is low. Thank you for your devotional,

  20. You don’t see it when it’s happening, but when you look back it is obvious. I had my grandparents to raise me, care for me, provide & love me. During divorce, I had people show up for me and be there. A job loss and God provided immediately. A move to a new town near my daughter and God put me right in the middle of God-fearing people and a wonderful church family. He always provides and I am so grateful.

  21. Father, today I choose to trust you and believe you. I’m thankful in the midst of all that is going on that you love me and are my stronghold. I praise you and thank you for our encouragers!

  22. Earlier this year my daughter discovered some unspeakable things her husband of 8 years had done. Things that had been brewing over the years, things they had argued about and at times in front of her three children. Now, sadly, the end of the marriage is a certainty. There have been things said and done that children should never see or hear and there will be no going back. My daughter has sought counseling for herself and her children. There is now a stalemate with her estranged husband who will not consent to this marriage ending and it leaves both of our families in a state of limbo. I have prayed, and have had many praying with us, for a resolution and a peaceful end to this situation. We serve a big God who hears the cries of our hearts and, like Elijah, will certainly use this season of draught to lead us to new places. Please be in prayer for us to listen, hear and see The Lord moving and that we will follow Him to His will be done. He is our rock and our salvation in Jesus name.

  23. Gwen, I have to know: How do you decide which scripture to use each day? I ask because it has been my experience lately that there is a tremendous crossover between various sites I use in my study every morning and I’m wondering if God is doing that to tell me something specific each time or is there a common theme schedule put out by someone for devotional writers to follow? Two different writings yesterday focused on Elijah and the ravens (Upper Room and Bible Study Tools).
    I appreciate how much your messages affect my life every day. Thank you for your faithfulness, sister!

  24. Thank you so much for this word, Gwen, and praises to GOD for giving you the words I needed to hear. ~ Love and Blessings!

  25. Thank you for this encouraging reminder sweet Gwen! The Lord walked with me through severe pain from Rheumatoid Arthritis. The Lord is so good and was with me in the deep valley of terrible flares. I am so thankful to now be in remission and able to help others who are walking through the trenches. The Lord is faithful in the good times and the bad and He uses all things for His glory and for our ultimate good as He refines us in the fire. Please update us soon on how your mom is doing. I have a dear friend who is also walking through a battle with stage 3 pancreatic cancer.

  26. This message touched my heart. I’ve seen God continue to bless me during my spiritual drought. I find myself at odds with the church. It seems today’s ministry is about what we can get from God instead of learning about God. I’ve been a long-time church attendee and have my tithes automatically deducted. So it’s not like I don’t have faith in God. I just don’t have faith in the church. I’m struggling. Thank you for today’s story.

  27. This finds me right in the middle of job uncertainty. I loved what you said about how Gods people have to walk thru the drought too. But he is with us and guides us.

  28. Wow Gwen, you were right. This was written for me. The story is too long to tell but we (my husband and I) have had to ‘leave and hide’ for a time from our church we attend. As we have hidden by the brook., we have been continually feasting and drinking from the ‘Spring of Living water’, and fed by the Word of God. We are praying for breakthrough to come soon so that we can return to our church family but God is using this time to solidify our ministry and to shape what that ministry will look like. Don’t you think it’s neat that when the brook did run dry, it was God’s way of moving Elijah on to his next assignment to speak faith into another believer? God commanded the widow to feed Elijah but He did not expect her to do it alone. God provided a promise to her that if she would obey by faith, her and her son’s needs would be met. God commands and gives a promise all at once. We are never alone. I think that it totally incredible! So thanks for writing! 💕

  29. Thank you, Gwen. God is good. He loves us. We are His children. He will bring us safely home, if that’s His will. I’m praying for your mom.

  30. Thank you Gwen , this word came at the right moment in my life I have been feeling sad my family is going through a loss my cousin wife lost her baby girl for the second time last year and this year in her womb and my heart brakes for them as this month I am greving the loss of my grandma and my young cousin . There are no words to give a greving mother but I cry out too the lord to heal and comfort our family in this time and I know the lord is near and he will get us through like he has time and time again I am greatful for he’s faithfulness . I am reminded now that the lord has been there through our losses in the past and he will be with us now he is our provider he will never leave us nor forsake us . Thank you qwen for this word today God bless you .

  31. Hi: Gwen

    I am in a spiritual drought trying to find a church here still. Visited 3 different churches but all are total Spanish. Can relate to some worship songs. Hope Mary Lou is doing better, give your mom a hug for me. And, we do need rain. El Nino causing hot and dry weather problems. I love you both dearly my sisters. Have a Blessed Day.
    Love Joy in Ecuador

  32. Gwen my son isn’t saved. He got the vax .He woke up with severe back pain and fell to the floor in convulsions and was rushed to the hospital full of clots and a pulmonary embolus. I’ve been praying for him for 13 years. He still has a clot in his leg. He was released to go home on blood thinners. He was told that he was “lucky” by the entire cath lab staff.,and still he won’t cry out to God. My daughter told him it wasn’t luck it was God. Still he thinks it was luck. God wants me to trust Him and I do. I believe God allowed this to wake him up., I am afraid that he might actually die in his sin because after all God doesn’t force himself on us. I’m struggling not to fear this, We are estranged because he doesn’t want to hear about God and I talk about God all the time. I can’t not talk about him He is mostly all I think about. So my son cut me off, he talks to my daughter. That’s how I found out. I want to be courageous because I do trust God. Please pray for him and I’ve asked a special favor of God.,that my son might be given a dream or a vision of hell. He needs to know what’s at stake. Won’t you please pray for that too? God tells us to ask for big things and this is a whopper! Will you join me in a whopper? Thankyou for being here for God and for me. I love you..Jan

  33. I am in a drought with my faith. I just have so many doubts. I once felt sure of everything, and now I dont. I also have medical issues. I don’t have a close Christian friend to pray for me although my pastor is. I need prayer and encouragement.

    1. Debbie K you are dearly loved and prayed over friend. Our Father is sending a beautifully appointed Christian friend, I claim it in Jesus name!

    2. Thank you, I had a health scare, plus my grandson was very sick God miraculous healed him, then my health scare , I am trusting God by faith for my healing financially its not there so I am standing on the word of by His stripes I am healed I have this devotion 1kings 17 this week and I have been drawing from it. This one encourages and strengthen my faith more in God. God bless thank you

  34. Thank you for sharing…just what I needed. Right at the moment when it seems as though everything is falling apart, words or encouragement bring hope.

  35. 2 1/2 years ago I was in a season deep sadness from the loss of both of my parents dying 9 days apart, anger at a sibling making things extremely difficult, heartache, frustrations and sadness and anger as I watched my 18yr old move out to live with a friend(s) without any serious plans for the future, working barely above minimum wage and causing major problems for all of us.. Fast forward to this June when my 18yr old made a complete turn around, mending the relationships with us and plans for the future!!! I spent A LOT of time in prayer and crying to God to have my young adult child remove the blinders and come back to us in a way that would be healing and He answered my prayers and the prayers of so many who prayed over the situation. In my season of deep grief, frustrations and stress and a broken heart I felt God was with me even when I couldnt see even a glimpse of His plan working. I struggled with my faith but through it all God was right there with me.

    God Bless the work you do Gwen.

  36. Amen, thank you for this because God is and has continued to be my Jehovah Jireh. He’s giving me strength to endure, strength to work and be diligent so that we lack nothing. It’s difficult at times and I have fought through not giving up because God is my refuge!!! I pray for all facing difficulties in this season that each be strengthen in their inner man and to lean on God who is our refuge and fortress. In Jesus’ Mighty Name, Amen.

  37. I was about to post a list of all the health issues I’m currently dealing with in my family when I read these other posts. While its still daunting at times, reading about others ‘desert places’ brings some perspective. We serve an all knowing, all powerful and loving Heavenly Father who knows my limitations and who has all along the way given me little notes of encouragement, big hugs from scripture and again, perspective.
    To God be the glory!!!

  38. Good Morning! It’s my breakfast time with God, and I found myself drawn towards this devotional. I am facing yet another medical procedure, a 2 hour MRI, this morning. I feel trapped in a drought of medical appointments and still no solid answers. I’m tired. Yet in the middle of all this there’s my monthly massage. That was last night! Ohh! The sweetness of relaxing and closing my eyes to focus on God and me. I need this break to feel rejuvenated. God knows what I need! In the midst of this, I have friends praying, calling to check in on me and sending God’s encouragement. I’ll be ok. God is with me!

  39. When I started to read this devotional it was for me . God has been with our all the long from our son having a kidney transplant at the age of ten then losing our home to a fire. My husband and my mom passed away 6 months apart. Then in 2021 our son had a second kidney transplant at the age of 24. This past March I lost my only sibling and God was with me through it all. Even in the darkest hour of our lives God is with us and making a way through the wilderness, sometimes we don’t understand but He does and I thank Him for never leaving us.

  40. Thank you so much Gwen. Your messages are always so in season and so practical. I am not in a season of drought but I do need to trust the Lord for all my provision. Thank you.
    I am going to send this onward as I know you are such a blessing to all who receive this.
    God Bless you abundantly as you continue in this really important ministry
    Lots of love

  41. I felt like this was for me. I work part-time with pretty descent pay. My husband works, but our bills out weight what we bring in. Now, we have added bills. Our daughter just went off to college. Now, there is tuition, car note for her car, my student loan payments starts up in October, and we are about 4 years behind in back taxes. We pay our tithes, offering and even seeds. I know God knows and is own the case. I can’t wait to see the outcome.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *