How Do You Discern the Presence of God?

Have you ever felt like you're at the end of your rope? Did you recognize that God showed up in your suffering? This was the exact story of Elijah. In 1 Kings 19:9-21, when Elijah needed it most, God spoke to him and sent him a godly friend to do life and ministry with. The key was getting alone, quiet time with God to discern His presence.

How do you discern the presence of God? #8 (1 Kings 19:9-21) 2/3 Elijah series 

RUNNING RED LIGHTS: = CRISIS! ??? “0X ”. Homework, pray, journal every time 1. conscience 2. Scripture 3. circumstances 4. HS = “at least 20X” 

Discerning God’s Presence

1 Kings 19:9–18 There he came to a cave and lodged in it. And behold, the word of the LORD came to him, and he said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” He said, “I have been very jealous for the LORD, the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.” And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper. And when Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And behold, there came a voice to him and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” He said, “I have been very jealous for the LORD, the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.” And the LORD said to him, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus. And when you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. And Jehu the son of Nimshi you shall anoint to be king over Israel, and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah you shall anoint to be prophet in your place.  And the one who escapes from the sword of Hazael shall Jehu put to death, and the one who escapes from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha put to death. Yet I will leave seven thousand in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.”

The Elijah Cave

I need the magazine name, headline, & photo

-Near Israeli city of Haifa today. -Baal worship until Elijah. -@ Mt Carmel 131 ft above sea. -Limestone walls. -Roughly 1350 sq ft & 15-16 ft high = 2 bdrm apt

“The Elijah Complex” – I’m the last true believer carrying the faith forward 

Rom. 11:1-6 days of “Elijah” “7000 men who have not bowed the kneel to Baal”= “remnant”

Lk. 12:32 -Jesus calls remnant “a little flock”

1.    Be the remnant 

2.    Find the remnant (Obadiah) 

@ Home – Noah’s family

@ Work – Daniel, Shadrach, Meshack, Abed-Nego (Elisha) 

@ Church – Rev. 2 Thyatira “the rest of you…who do not hold to this teaching of Satan”

Hearing from God – Word & Spirit ministry (Rudder/Sail) 

1.    God spoke hurricane wind -Noah, Moses, & Elijah rain after 3 yrs (1 Ki. 18:45) 

2.    God spoke earthquake – Moses, Jonathan, Jesus, Paul, & Elijah (rain pounding, fire hitting)

3.    God spoke fire – Moses, Aaron, & Elijah fire from Heaven 

GOD SPOKE IN A “LOW WHISPER” & covered face like Seraphim (Isaiah 6)

a voice, a soft whisper (CSB)    a still & soft voice (GNV)    quiet, whispering voice (GW)

the soft whisper of a voice (GNT)  a quiet, gentle voice (ICB  )gentle whisper (TLB)           

a gentle & quiet whisper (MSG)   a tiny whisper (NCB)    a still small voice (NKJV) 

God = A.  free B. creative

GOD COMES – boldly vs humbly;     powerfully vs gently;   big way vs little way 

= Jesus Christ 1. humble, 2. gentle, 3. little 

Process: 1. God speaks 2. You hear 3. You interpret/summarize 4. You speak 

    TESTIMONY OF WRITING Abort Abortion & New Days Old Demons 63k word BOOK 

Screen Time  

People average roughly 7 hours a day of screen time. 

Gen Z averages around 9 hours of daily screen time.

Screen time has increased by nearly 50 minutes a day since 2013.               TECH USED FOR GUIDANCE – IPHONE/IDOL 

Constant Noise 

Phone 5+ hours a day 

TV up to 4 hours a day 

Music up to 4 hours a day 

Phone calls 3+ hours a day 

Radio 2 hours a day 

Face-to-face conversation 1 hour a day 

TOTAL: up to 19 hours a day with noise 

Sleep less than 7 hours a day = ¾ noise ¼ asleep 


God’s Presence in God’s People  

1 Kings 19:19-21 So he departed from there and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen in front of him, and he was with the twelfth. Elijah passed by him and cast his cloak upon him. And he left the oxen and ran after Elijah and said, “Let me kiss my father and my mother, and then I will follow you.” And he said to him, “Go back again, for what have I done to you?” And he returned from following him and took the yoke of oxen and sacrificed them and boiled their flesh with the yokes of the oxen and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he arose and went after Elijah and assisted him.

God’s presence 

  1. Direct 
  2. Mediated Spirit-filled people 

Elisha “God saves”

–       Jesus mentions (Luke 4:27) 

–       Spiritual son like Paul w/Titus/Timothy/Onesimus (1 Timothy Real Men) 

–       Working regular job when called like disciples who were fishing 

–       Kills ox – wealth/income, bbq for neighbors 


–       God & Senior Leader = choose successor

–       Elijah just broke, a bit of ministry & training – God took him home/retired 

–       60 yrs miracles, teaching, fighting corrupt politics & culture 

–       Personal 1). Past              2). Future RF & Trinity 

–       GOAL – successful handoff like Elijah-Elisha for 60 yrs  

  1. Who is your Elijah? 
  2. Who is your Elisha?
  3. What is God saying to you that you need to hear and heed?  


When ur born you have to learn to listen, translate, & speak in response. God is Father. UR his child. He is speaking to you & wants you to listen & speak to Him (2x prayer).

Photo of author

Mark Driscoll

It's all about Jesus! Read More