Elijah and the Widow

1 Kings 17:8-16

Then the word of the Lord came to him, saying, “Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there. See, I have commanded a widow there to provide for you.” 10 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, indeed a widow was there gathering sticks. And he called to her and said, “Please bring me a little water in a cup, that I may drink.” 11 And as she was going to get it, he called to her and said, “Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.”

12 So she said, “As the Lord your God lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin, and a little oil in a jar; and see, I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die.”

13 And Elijah said to her, “Do not fear; go and do as you have said, but make me a small cake from it first, and bring it to me; and afterward make some for yourself and your son. 14 For thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘The bin of flour shall not be used up, nor shall the jar of oil run dry, until the day the Lord sends rain on the earth.’”

15 So she went away and did according to the word of Elijah; and she and he and her household ate for many days. 16 The bin of flour was not used up, nor did the jar of oil run dry, according to the word of the Lord which He spoke by Elijah.


God had stopped the rain from falling.  He had dried up the land.  He commanded Elijah to go to this widow and her son; Elijah obeyed…  As he came upon the widow and asked her for a drink of water, she had kindness for this stranger and was willing to oblige… then he called out to her and asked her for a morsel of bread.  What must she have thought?  The drought had taken it's toll upon the land, upon the people.  Here she was, a widow, no one to look after her and her son.  All she had left for them was a handful of flour and a little oil in a jar.  Just enough to make one last meal for her and her son.  Not a lavish meal at that, just a little bread and then they would die…  Now this stranger comes along and God asks her to share the little that she has with him.  Can you imagine?  You are down to almost nothing, and God asks you to give some of that away…   Elijah assures her that the LORD will provide… He tells her to not be afraid.  That God will cause the flour to not be used up and the oil to not run dry.  The widow did not tell him to find someone else to help him, she did not send him away.  She stepped out in faith, and did what God was calling her to do… to take the little that she had, and give it away.  God is faithful!  Her flour did not run out and her oil did not run dry.

Is God calling you to step out in faith, to take the little that you have and give it away for someone in need?  Perhaps it is to help an orphaned child to come home to their family… maybe it is to say yes to another child through the miracle of adoption.  You may be saying, "But Lord, we don't have enough… we are barely hanging on.  We can't even make ends meet now as it is?  How can we give money to someone?  How can we pay for the adoption, or afford to raise another child?  Maybe Jesus is calling you to give more of your time for His kingdom.  There are not enough hours in the day as it is and now God is asking you to give more of yourself… more time, more energy, more finances…  What ever He is asking you to give, be encouraged… do not fear…. all that we have is from God anyway.  So when He calls you to give it away, rest in the knowledge that He alone is our provider and He is faithful… If you only have a handful of flour and a little oil, just enough for that one last meal… and He is asking you to give some of it away, do it!  Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus and simply say, "Yes, Lord."  Then stand, and be amazed as you watch the hand of God move for His purpose, for His glory, and for the love of His people.  The flour will not run out and the oil will not run dry… He is faithful…