Summary: Mother’s Day is celebrated in so many areas of the world today. Here is a story of a rich, lonely, barren, God fearing woman, who put God first and received a double blessing just because she refused to discard her faith when things went bad.
II KINGS 4: 8-37
THE SHUNEMITE’S DELIGHT
I. HER DESCRIPTION: *
II. HER DELIGHT: **
III. THE DISCERNMENTS ***
Little is known about this woman except that which is recorded in the Sacred Book. She is nameless; her husband is nameless, even her boy is nameless. The only names that are recorded here are Elisha and Gehazi. Yet, even though three of the five are nameless, the story revealed that of a desperate mother and what she did to save her boy.
This world would be better off if we had more moms like this mother who decided that when things go wrong she would seek out God’s man and His plan for the specific situation. The heart of this mother was indeed set on following God’s dictates in every situation and because of that, the lad in the story was able to come back to life and no doubt live for a few more years rejoicing that mom cared enough for him not to let him continue in death. As the years passed, this lad had a tale to tell about mom and her dedication to God and to his well-being. Mom, on the other hand, had a story that would rival anything Hollywood could or would produce.
I see three things about this story that stand out for good observations regarding this lady and being a good mother. The first thing I note regards HER DESCRIPTION. This is very important for what is to come as the story unfolds. The second thing I note relates to HER DELIGHT as she becomes a mother and the cares that come with this awesome task. The last part I note has to do with THE DISCERNMENTS that are involved here-both with the prophet, his helper and the lady herself. When all are added together, God reveals a miracle that is beyond comprehension, they show us that to follow Him is still the best thing to do in this life.
* HER DESCRIPTION: The writer of the Word gives us some very pointed information regarding this lady and to miss them will hinder the truth that is intended for all of us to comprehend.
The first thing I note in verses 8 to 12 have to do with her Devotedness. There is something about her devotion to God and to His prophet that is exemplary. The Bible says that she was a “great” woman and indeed she was. Just how “great” she was is uncertain but she was certainly “great” in her faith.
The record shows that the prophet, Elisha, visited Shunem where somehow they met and she constrained him to stop and dine with her and her family. The encounter must have been successful because Elisha would later stop often and dine with these splendid people. It did not take too many visits by Elisha before the lady began to discern that her frequent guest was a holy man.
It does not say how she discovered that he was a holy man. Maybe it was in the manner of his dress. Maybe it was in the manner of his speech. Maybe it was in the manner of his deportment, but what ever it was that shown itself to her is something we Christians should ponder. What does the world say about us as we interact with people? Can the world, our hosts, the motel keepers, the restaurant servers tell that we are a Christian? What ever it was that shown through the prophet of old should serve as a clear statement to us to try and do likewise for Jesus. There was something about the prophet and her that must have struck a cord of similarity. Her devotion to God was evidenced in the way she made her house a place of rest for Elisha and for what she decided to do for him.
Next, I notice her Deportment, verse 13, towards the man of God. She not only fed him when he visited but she decided to build a separate room just for the man of God. Her actions show that she was a wealthy lady and was used to entertaining people. It would take money to do as she wanted to do and to feed him and Gehazi when they visited. Yet, her money was not her god and she decided to go the extra mile for the prophet and his servant by adding on another room just for her visitors.
Her mannerisms were such that she wanted the man of God to have some privacy for himself and she would feel good knowing that she was helping God’s cause by helping one of His prophets. God’s servants can help in so many ways.