Enough to share

Enough to share

“…[Elijah] said [to the widow], ‘Bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.’ But she said, ‘As the Lord your God lives, I have nothing baked, only a handful of meal in a jar, and a little oil in a jug; I am now gathering a couple of sticks, so that I may go home and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die.’ Elijah said to her, ‘Do not be afraid; go and do as you have said; but first make me a little cake of it and bring it to me, and afterwards make something for yourself and your son. For thus says the Lord the God of Israel: The jar of meal will not be emptied and the jug of oil will not fail until the day that the Lord sends rain on the earth.’ She went and did as Elijah said, so that she as well as he and her household ate for many days. The jar of meal was not emptied, neither did the jug of oil fail, according to the word of the Lord that he spoke by Elijah.”
–I Kings 17.7-16

Serving lunchIn the midst of famine, this widow plainly names that death is coming. She gathers what she can for her and her son’s last supper—just a handful of cornmeal or flour, a dab of oil, and some sticks to make a fire. Then she bluntly says to prophet Elijah, “I’m going home to cook for myself and my son; we will eat, and then we will die.”

Honest plain talk about starvation and poverty.

Yet, here’s the thing—the widow’s actions show that she really believes in abundance. Even though all the signs around her point to scarcity, she lives out of a deep sense that there will be enough to share. That there’s enough to give to others first because the Lord is involved here. Before making her family’s last supper, she bakes a cake for Elijah. She prepares a meal for the man of God before she and her son feast on their last morsels.

This widow has moxie—moxie driving her to generosity.

I wonder what it could look like for us to live with generosity-moxie like the widow of Zarephath. For us to practice abundance as individuals, as families, and as a faith community because the Lord is involved here. I wonder what our fears are regarding money and resources. I wonder how we can have some honest plain talk together about the reality of our broken economy marked by competition. I wonder what it could look like for us to then show that we really believe in God’s story—a story that continually proclaims that there’s more than enough to go around. Will you wonder together with me? Will you wonder and pray and ask the Holy Spirit to grant us an extra measure of generosity-moxie?'

The jar of meal was not emptied, neither did the jug of oil fail, according to the word of the Lord that he spoke by Elijah.

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