El Shaddai

A teaching by one of our Five Fold Teachers, Isaac Vickers

A short foreword to this is that it is meant primarily for leaders. That being said, I do encourage any and everyone to grow in their spiritual maturity, never satisfied with sitting at the door of conversion, and embracing the full of discipleship.

El Shaddai is a name of God, which most might be more familiar when translated as God Almighty. It means the all sufficient God, or God of all provision and power. It is a name of God that is singular rather than plural, which makes it odd by comparison to others, but it is with reason. It is a statement that God alone is able and necessary to sustain you.

I want to bring the focus of this name to the story of Job. The significance there is the comparison of providing for someone in all stages of life: Job’s provision when the person seemingly has everything, the hedge of protection around Job and his family, as well as Job acknowledging he still needed God while he was rich. This of course is followed by when he had nothing, not even his health. God was his provision.

In our attempts to help other people, we oftentimes attempt to step into the role of being their sole provision without seeing the error or understanding why it does not work. The words are simple enough, but we do not fully acknowledge this simple truth at times in practice: we are not anyone’s God. We simply cannot be. It is beyond us.

To be a leader that seeks to be the single source for all of a disciple’s needs is the infraction of that simple truth. We are not expected to step into that place, and just as importantly, we should not allow ourselves to be placed there by another person. The spirit of excellence calls us to sacrifice for the good of our flock, but we must measure ourselves with discernment.