Tuesday, July 10, 2012

a new insight - that precious pot of oil

I am hoping to get back to blogging. Our family has recently left Texas to settle at Principia college in Elsah, Illinois. My Journal listing will reflect the new address and contact information. It is lovely here and we are all enjoyikng all the opportunities for fun activities here.

This morning I thought about the story of the widow facing poverty. She had already lost her husband and now creditors were threatening to take her sons, her only means of support and protection. She turns to the prophet Elisha, her husband's teacher. I wonder what she thought he could do. He does not offer to give her money, or to intercede with the creditors. He simply asks her what she has in her house. It appears that she has already sold off what she could for all that is left is a pot of oil. That is what struck me. That pot of oil must have been her most precious possession. It was the last thing she held on to. Imagine her concern when Elisha tells her to go borrow pots from all her neighbors (she might have already approached them for help) who might be reluctant to lend something that might be taken to pay her debt. She is to borrow 'not a few'. This probably set up an expectation of something happening. Once they had been gathered, she is to shut her door so no curious people could see what was going on. Her sons were allowed to see, perhaps this would be a strength to their faith. Would they become faithful followers of Elisha as their father had been?  Now she is to take what precious oil remained of her cherished supply and pour it out. Into those borrowed pots. What courage and faith it must have taken to be obedient to that. What a lesson for us.

Has there been a time when you seemed to be down to your last precious possession? That could be something material, like her pot of oil, a little something tucked away for a time of need. It could be your last chance for someone who has done you wrong in the past. It might be your treasured time, protected for time alone. It could be that last treat you allow yourself. Something precious to you that seems to be all you have left in a time of want. Are you willing to let go of it, if that is what divine Love is directing you to do? Do you trust that a blessing will follow? She was and she did. What flowed from that was only limited by her expectations. If she borrowed five pots, five were filled. If she borrowed fifty pots, fifty would have been filled. It was more than enough to meet the immediate need and repay the debt, as Elisah advised her to do first. Then she was able to live on the rest.

Think about about that precious pot of oil today and the lesson it might hold for you today. And the blessing.

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