Summary: Part 3 of a series on Elisha
Elisha, A Tale Of Ridiculous Faith, Week 3
Today, we're in the third week of a message series
we’re calling, Elisha, A Tale of Ridiculous Faith.
by ridiculous we mean,
its so good, so huge, its ridiculous.
The first week, we talked about burning plows,
leaving behind anything
that would keep you from following God completely.
Last week, we talked about digging ditches,
and how we show our faith,
and then God shows his faithfulness.
Today, we're going to talk about filling jars.
I believe this message is going to speak to
those of you who feel overwhelmed this morning.
Some of you feel like
there's just too much going on,
you feel like you're in need right now,
you feel like you don't have enough energy,
you don’t enough time.
Some of you feel like you're really low on faith,
or spiritually at a low point.
If you feel like that today,
like you’re running on empty
in one area of life or another,
then this story is for you,
and I believe God is going to speak to you through it.
2nd Kings, chapter 4, verses 1 and 2.
The wife of a man from the company of 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 little olive oil.'
This is during a time in Israel’s history,
when the king and most of the people
were not following the true God,
they were serving the false god Baal.
And as a result, the prophets of God
were in bad shape,
they had to hide out and lay low,
so its no wonder at all
that this poor widow is in financial need
Now it doesn’t mention her name,
We don't know who she is.
but according to Jewish tradition,
this was the wife of the prophet Obadiah.
And Obadiah was a leader of the prophets,
in fact he was known for protecting and providing
for 50 other prophets.
But now he’s died,
and if indeed this was Obadiah's wife,
then one of the reasons she had so little
is because Obadiah gave so much,
to meet the needs of other prophets.
So if you picture this, we've got a widow,
probably in her early or mid 30's,
she's just lost her husband,
she's got no chance of meaningful employment because
in this culture women didn’t work outside the home,
unless they wanted to take the job
that no woman wants to take.
if you get my drift.
And so she's in a devastating place.
She's lost her husband,
can't pay her bills,
and the creditor is coming after her 2 sons,
because the law back then said
if you can't pay your debts,
they can take your sons as slaves,
and they will be slaves until the debt is paid.
So it doesn't get any worse than this.
Now, some of you are probably thinking,
Yeah, I was devastated yesterday,
because I got a flat tire and it made me late for work,
that just ruined my whole day.
Or, the gps on my iPhone took me to the wrong place again…
And I was at the restaurant and it was horrible,
because they put too much goat cheese on my salad.
"I told you I don't want a lot of goat cheese ...
I am just so frustrated…
Isn’t it amazing how worked up we can get
about things that are really not a big deal.
I only got 7 likes on my facebook post,
my kid got a C on their paper,
and the dog peed on the carpet again,
my whole life is ruined...
Those are not devastating problems,
those are what I’d call entry level problems.
Those are put there by God, for you to learn patience.
And if you’re getting depressed and frustrated by those,
its because you’re a slow learner, okay?
But its not a big deal.
In fact, half of the stress in your life can be eliminated,
if you simply figure out,
what’s really a big deal,
and what’s not a big deal.
One way to figure that out is,
are you going to even remember it
5 or 10 years from now?
If not, its not that big a deal.
Then once you figure out what’s not a big deal,
its really simple,
don’t make a big deal out of what’s not.
At some point in my marriage, I realized that
99% of what Kathy and I fought about was not a big deal.