God uses, God works with, God blesses what we have, not what we don’t have. What we have is enough for God.
Moses had a stick, a widow had a handful of flour and a boy had a lunch. The stick became the Rod of God – turned into a serpant, made water come out of a rock. The small handful of flour fed a woman and her son and Elijah thru a drought. 5 small loaves and 2 fish could feed 5000.
The size of what you have does not matter to God. It is your obedience, sacrifice and offering that matter.
In 2 Kings we read of a woman who was facing her sons being taken into slavery. Destitute and in despair she came to Elisha for help. Elisha asks her for what she has in her house. Could you imagine her astonishment – “if I had anything I wouldn’t be in this mess. I have nothing! I have nothing at all.” Emphatic. She was captive to her mindset that she has nothing. We’ve all been there – imprisoned by our circumstances and the facts as we see them.
But then she does add an exception…
She says I have nothing “EXCEPT” a small jar of oil.
In her “EXCEPT” was the key to her miracle. In her “EXCEPT” was the answer to her need.
It was her “EXCEPT” that Elisha, that God was looking for.
You might think “I don’t have what it takes to start a new business, except I keep getting ideas.”
I’m not like the big heroes of the Faith, but I did pray for that healing and it did happen.
I don’t know much about the Bible and I can’t preach but at work I said to someone “God loves you” and I invited them to church.
I don’t have much money to help people, but I did make that meal for my sick neighbour.
God works by exception. The exception proves the rule. He takes what we have, not what we don’t have or could have had, or long to have or even should have had. He takes what we have.
What do you have in your house, in your hand, in your heart?
Elisha tells the widow to ask for ALL the jars from her friends and neighbours and then to begin pouring her jar of oil into them. So, with her sons, in obedience and she takes her little jar, and she begins to pour. And she pours and she pours. And many jars are filled until there are no more jars. And only then does the oil stop flowing. She rushes out of the house – she is now rich!
She says to Elisha “God has met my needs.”
Elisha says “Go, sell the oil, pay your debts and live on the rest.”
She started with slavery – and ends with freedom.
It is the life that Jesus calls us to. That the Holy Spirit wants us to have .
A miracle! Free. And not just the immediate need met – but her life provided for!
God can do exceptional things with your exceptions.
We can all have bad days, hard days, days that could be considered a waste of makeup! Days when we think it’s just us against the world. Fortunately for us most of the time that’s just a figure of speech!
I take heart from Elisha though. Here he was just one man, with a servant surrounded by an army that had been terrorising Israel. And who were they after? Elisha, himself! I’m with the servant here – I’d be terrified! I’d be thinking it was game over. And yet Elisha says something I think is extraordinary.
“Don’t worry about it – there are more on our side than on their side.” (2 Kings 6:16 MSG)
And then He prays.
At that moment I’d be praying something clever like that God would smite the army or transport me somewhere safe…fast.
But Elisha prays for his servant, “O God, open his eyes and let him see.” (2 Kings 6:16 MSG)
Elisha prays that his servant would see that God’s solution was already in place.
I love how the Message Bible puts it “The eyes of the young man were opened and he saw. A wonder! The whole mountainside full of horses and chariots of fire surrounding Elisha!”
To see what Elisha could already see, to see what the servant could then see. Wow – that would definitely give me assurance and confidence. It would encourage me. And affirm that God has a different perspective than we do. That He sees what we cannot. Our natural, physical eyes are so limited. Even the eyes of our mind are limited to what we perceive and interpret. But the eyes of our heart – well when they are opened we see the armies of God!
It reminds me of my favourite quote from the Little Prince “Here is my secret. It is very simple. It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; What is essential is invisible to the eye.“
To me, this is what Elisha prayed. It is what Paul prayed
“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people.” (Ephesians 1:18)
I remember the worship song “Open the eyes of my heart Lord”.
“Open the eyes of my heart Lord,
Open the Eyes of my heart
I want to see you.”
This is my prayer today – that my eyes be opened to see God. To see what He already has put in place in my life.