Our family has been having family worship on Sundays together, as many households around the world have been. Chris and I have been taking turns sharing with our 5 kids the different things the Lord has been speaking to us in this quarantine season. Yesterday the Lord reminded me of this scripture and I wanted to share it to give others hope during these uncertain times as well.
2 Kings 4:1-7
The wife of a man from the company of the prophets cried out to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead, and you know that he revered the Lord. But now his creditor is coming to take my two boys as his slaves.” Elisha replied to her, “How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have in your house? “Your servant has nothing there at all,” she said, “except a small jar of olive oil.” Elisha said, “Go around and ask all your neighbors for empty jars. Don’t ask for just a few. Then go inside and shut the door behind you and your sons. Pour oil into all the jars, and as each is filled, put it to one side.” She left him and shut the door behind her and her sons. They brought the jars to her and she kept pouring. When all the jars were full, she said to her son, “Bring me another one.” But he replied, “There is not a jar left.” Then the oil stopped flowing. She went and told the man of God, and he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debts. You and your sons can live on what is left.”
Something the Lord has continuously challenged me in my life is trusting in HIS provision. Time and time again I am reminded of my own fickleness, my lack of faith, my doubts of HIS goodness and character.
Yesterday I felt so encouraged again by this scripture. Many if not all of us in the WHOLE WORLD are going through uncertain times. Whether it’s concerning unstable health, the current virus fears, finances, strained relationships, loneliness, housing, the list can go on and on for so many people. The widow in this passage lost her husband and if that is not horrible enough, she is in a desperate situation, about to lose her 2 sons.
Do you ever feel cornered by your circumstances too?
I have felt cornered at times in my life…thankfully never to the extreme of this widow, but sometimes life circumstances can make me feel completely overwhelmed. I love how the Lord shows us that there is always a way out when we cry out to Him and place our worry and trust in His hands. Often, His answer may not be the answer we want. I’m just being honest, if I was this mother, my initial reaction would have been to be annoyance, asking God to give me actual cash to quickly pay the debts, why was Elisha talking about empty jars at this critical, desperate time?!
But the Lord had a different plan. Instead the Lord wanted to provide for this woman in a different, completely out of the box way, a MIRACLE that would blow her mind. In a sense maybe He was asking, “Will you take one step of faith and trust ME, even though you don’t fully understand why I am asking this of you, and you don’t know the end result will be yet?”
If you currently feel “cornered” or overwhelmed by life’s circumstances, I want to encourage you to look to our good Father for your provision and answer. Stories like this reveal that He is always faithful to His Beloved ones. He may answer you in a completely unconventional and different way than you may consider ideal, but I truly have faith that He will indeed answer you when you cry out.
I have countless stories from our lives where we have seen the provision of the Lord come through for us, even at times when we have been unwise with our money and didn’t “deserve” to get bailed out by the Lord. But God is good to us even when we don’t “deserve it” or “earn it”, isn’t that the truth?!
I feel like I should share a more serious story here, but the one I thought of is a funny story…funny because it shows how short sighted and immature we were when we first got married. Here’s one I want to share from when we were newlyweds. You can have a good laugh at Chris and I;)
Chris and I found out we were pregnant with our first child in our 2nd month of marriage. It was a time of uncertainty and wonder but one thing we did know, is that we wanted to do something fun together before our baby came. We had a two week window in between him finishing his seminary classes and his actual graduation day. So, we decided to take a cross country road trip from our little apartment in New Jersey to visit his sister in California! Without much planning, a full tank of gas, an atlas, and a Motel 6 booklet, we ventured off on our very first road trip in our marriage.
Somewhere in between New Mexico and Arizona, our air conditioning knob broke. This is a first world problem, but definitely inconvenient since we still had to drive through some super hot states and I was pregnant! When we finally made it to my sister in law’s apartment, we had a fun time exploring San Francisco with her and eating wonderful food. Chris took the car in to a mechanic to get the broken knob replaced. But he got a grim call from the mechanic shortly after. The mechanic saw our license plate from New Jersey and said, “You aren’t planning to drive this car back to New Jersey are you? Because you will break down on the way unless you fix A, B, and C… ” Both of our parents were going to be excitedly waiting for us at his graduation. My parents used to own a store and they NEVER closed their store except for graduations and immediate family weddings. Chris’ graduation from seminary was a HUGE deal for both of our parents, so we COULD NOT miss it!
What else could this broke seminary couple do with an unexpected $2,000 repair? We had zero savings and only enough money to make it back home, so we charged the car repairs on our credit card and finished our road trip with a cloud of new debt hanging over our heads, but we made it just in time for his graduation. The morning of Chris’ graduation, a friend congratulated him for an award he was going to receive at the ceremony. Chris was shocked because he was unaware that he was getting any awards. It was from a class he loved, so he felt really honored. But then his friend said, “This isn’t just a certificate…it’s MONEY!”
When Chris opened the award envelope and we got to see how much money it was. Our parents didn’t understand why Chris and I began jumping up and down like crazy people. We obviously had not yet told them about the fresh debt we just accrued on our car repairs, but was now all paid off by that check. We got to share the exciting news with them afterwards at dinner. Chris and I grew up together and matured a LOT those beginning years of marriage. Thinking about this story still cracks me up.
Honestly, most of our debt was NOT resolved in such a quick miraculous way. In fact, most of our other debts were paid in the good old fashioned “one baby step” at a time. God definitely uses wise financial plans as well. This is just one funny story from our lives of His provision. We have miracle stories as well as normal, hard work, budget stories…but I just wanted to encourage you with a good laugh today.
I bless you with Epheisans 3: 16-21, today!
I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
By: Eunice Ho
To learn more about Eunice and her ministry, click here.