Have you ever said to yourself, “Oh Lord not me! Please use someone else to do this job!” Most of us can honestly say we have. Yet it is no mistake God has you where He wants you: strategically placed.
1 Kings 18:3-16, there is a godly man named Obadiah who illustrates this principle. This is a different Obadiah than the one who has a book of the Bible named after him; this Obadiah oversaw King Ahab’s palace. Divinely placed in the house of King Ahab, Obadiah found great favor with him. He proved himself to be trustworthy and obedient, and the king felt comfortable conversing with him and sharing his concerns. Obadiah greatly feared the Lord, and as a result, God strategically placed him in a position to save His prophets.
Vastly different was Jezebel, King Ahab’s wife, who slaughtered God’s prophets because they refused to worship Baal. A devious woman, Jezebel held tremendous influence over King Ahab and “wore the pants in the family” in a very bad way. But the King’s servant Obadiah, heard of her plans and hid one hundred of God’s prophets, supplying them bread and water and risking his life in doing so.
As predicted by the trusted prophet Elijah, there had been no rain for three years, which brought about a terrible famine. Therefore King Ahab asked Obadiah to go to a particular region to scout out brooks and streams for water and grass to keep the king’s livestock alive. As Obadiah was scouring the land for water, the prophet Elijah appeared before him and told him to tell King Ahab, “Elijah is here!”
Obadiah reported to King Ahab that Elijah wanted to see him. Trusting the prophet, Ahab went to meet with Elijah, who convicted the king of the great sin over Israel due to abandoning the Lord’s commandments and following Baal. Elijah then directed King Ahab to gather the children of Israel and the prophets of Asherah and Baal on Mount Carmel. On Mount Carmel, the Lord proved Himself to be the God of Israel in a mighty demonstration of His power, and “all the people saw it, they fell facedown and said, ‘Yahweh, He is God! Yahweh, He is God!” (1 Kings 18:39).
God used a man who feared Him to be the bridge between God and His chosen people, and God does the same with us.
You may think you are an ordinary person, but the Lord places you in strategic places all the time. He began doing this as soon as you accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior. These strategic places are your family, friends, co-workers, acquaintances, and even strangers. You may feel you are not that important or equipped in whatever position the Lord places you, but He supplies everything you need to minister to others when the time comes. All it requires is faith and trust to step out. “And my God will liberally supply (fill until full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippines 4:19 AMP).
A strategic position could be as simple as realizing you walked out of a store with an item you didn’t pay for, and going back in to pay the cashier. At that moment, the Lord may open opportunity for you to share your testimony or explain why you returned the item. This has happened to me on a few occasions and allowed me to drop spiritual seeds into the hearts of unbelievers.
God strategically placed our daughter in a church that ministers to widows. This was never something she planned but God knew her tender heart. This opportunity not only ministered to the widow but tremendously blessed our daughter too. Maybe a friend in a crisis reached out to you and you can share how the Lord helped you. God can use all your past experiences to strategically place you where He can use you. Look at some of the people in scripture:
*Jesus strategically placed Himself by the well so He could meet the Samaritan woman.
*David was strategically placed in the fields when Samuel appeared to his father and called for him. David was there for two reasons. To be anointed king but also God place him there to kill Goliath.
*Anna was strategically placed in the Tabernacle when the prophet Eli saw her and prophesied that she would conceive a child.
*Paul and Silas were strategically placed in prison so they could share their faith with the guards.
*Joseph was strategically placed in prison but gained favor with the king. Therefore, Joseph went from prison to the palace.
*Moses was strategically placed as the leader of the Israelites.
*Nehemiah was strategically placed as a trusted cup bearer in the king’s court so the city of Jerusalem could be rebuilt.
*Jonah was strategically placed in the belly of a whale so he could be convicted about preaching to the people of Nineveh.
Obadiah may not have felt significant as a steward to the king, but he was trustworthy and obedient. The Lord asks us to be trustworthy and obedient as we “walk the walk” and “talk the talk.” We are blessed and honored to steward the gospel and share as He leads us. No task is too small or too large for the Lord in placing you in strategic places to accomplish His purposes. We are witnesses to a society that needs Jesus. Be aware, the enemy will try to discourage you that you are not worthy or equipped or good enough, or he will make you afraid. Yet when you are in that strategic place, be secure in knowing the Lord has a plan and will use you. Ask Him daily, “How can You use me today?”—and let Him do the work.
Obadiah could have been killed helping the prophets, but he continued to make himself available to God and the king, so God used him as a catalyst to save His people.
“Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the LORD!” (Psalm 31:24 ESV). The Lord wants to minister to people through you. Stay available and He will do the rest!
Lord, it amazes me that you place me in strategic places to be a conduit of your love. When you strategically place me with an opportunity, I will call on You to know what to do or say. My desire is to bring You glory through my obedience and drop “seeds” into the heart of those who do not know You. Thank you for the opportunities you give me. I will trust and have faith to step out of my comfort zone as You lead, guide and direct me. In the precious name of Jesus, Amen.