Thursday, September 17, 2009

When trusting God is a handful

A passage in 1 Kings got me thinking the other day. Trusting God is tough (now, that's not just a revelation I came to now. I always knew it!)

Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land. 8 Then the word of the LORD came to him: "Go at once to Zarephath of Sidon and stay there. I have commanded a widow in that place to supply you with food." So he went to Zarephath. When he came to the town gate, a widow was there gathering sticks. He called to her and asked, "Would you bring me a little water in a jar so I may have a drink?" 11 As she was going to get it, he called, "And bring me, please, a piece of bread."

"As surely as the LORD your God lives," she replied, "I don't have any bread—only a handful of flour in a jar and a little oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it—and die."

Elijah said to her, "Don't be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small cake of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son. For this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: 'The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the LORD gives rain on the land.' "

She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the LORD spoken by Elijah.

Now, this lady only had enough flour and oil to cook a small amount of bread. The fact that Elijah asked for her possible last meal is staggering. He followed with an intriguing challenge. Try and put yourself into both Elijah's and the widow's shoes. How would you react if your last meal on this earth was asked by s stranger? Despite his promise from God, would you trust in the heat of the moment? I sure wouldn't. Forigve my doubt but in the past I've had a Thomas-like faith. However, like always God fulfills his promise and the widow never runs out of flour and oil. Quite miraculous.
Consider how trusting God is like that. How much more faith would we have if we trusted like that widow?

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