2 Kings 4:1-7 NLT
1 One day the widow of a member of the group of prophets came to Elisha and cried out, “My husband who served you is dead, and you know how he feared the Lord. But now a creditor has come, threatening to take my two sons as slaves.” 2 “What can I do to help you?” Elisha asked. “Tell me, what do you have in the house?”“Nothing at all, except a flask of olive oil,” she replied. 3 And Elisha said, “Borrow as many empty jars as you can from your friends and neighbors. 4 Then go into your house with your sons and shut the door behind you. Pour olive oil from your flask into the jars, setting each one aside when it is filled.” 5 So she did as she was told. Her sons kept bringing jars to her, and she filled one after another. 6 Soon every container was full to the brim!“Bring me another jar,” she said to one of her sons.“There aren’t any more!” he told her. And then the olive oil stopped flowing. 7 When she told the man of God what had happened, he said to her, “Now sell the olive oil and pay your debts, and you and your sons can live on what is left over.”
How available are you? Are you willing to do whatever it takes in order to have the Lord work through you? Look at the woman in 2 Kings 4. When told to “borrow as many empty jars as you can find…”she sent her sons to help her. Can you imagine? Realizing their fate if they didn’t pay the creditors, they probably went quickly door to door, “Please help! Elisha says we need to gather jars - what have you got that we can use??!” It would have been a frantic gathering, scurrying from one house to the next, trying not to break the jars… balancing and carrying them carefully and bringing them to their mother, only to have them one by one miraculously filled. If that scene isn’t enough, here’s where I see the other, unspoken miracle… verse 6:
6 “Soon every container was full to the brim! “Bring me another jar,” she said to one of her sons.“There aren’t any more!” he told her. And then the olive oil stopped flowing.”
Can you envision it? There they are, room littered with random borrowed vessels. Oil everywhere. The sons look around, the mother brushes a fallen hair away from her face. All the sudden, they are out of jars.
I wonder if panic set in with the sons. Is it enough? Will it pay the debt? Will we be slaves forever? All the questions, all the oil, and there they are just looking at it all and each other. Have we done enough?
Here’s where my curiosity takes over. It is clear in scripture that the Lord used what was already in her hand to be a catalyst for delivery (now, that will preach!). It also is clear that it was more than enough and that they would be provided for. But I’m just curious… Do you think that if they had run to the next village, or gone around one more time and asked again and had gathered more jars, there would have been more oil?
Is it possible that the blessing was only limited by the availability?
How often have I missed a blessing from the Lord - a MIRACLE - because I just didn’t keep offering myself? Don’t get me wrong, I firmly believe we don’t have to DO anything to find favor with God. It is by grace we are saved, not by works. (Ephesians 2:8-9). However, I know that there are those times when I posture myself before Him with an attitude of “whatever you want, Lord” and honestly, those when I don’t. I also know that when I am more “available” to Him, there are greater ways He can operate through me for the Kingdom. It is in those times when my heart is surrendered, when my hands are open, where my heart says "I'll do whatever it takes, Lord"....that He simply will find more of me to fill.
Tara is Greg's girl, mom to two sons of thunder, a hunger fighter, big dreamer and worship pastor at seacoast church.