Years ago, when I first became a believer in Christ, I spent a lot of time reading only the New Testament of my Bible, it was much more reader friendly for my new found identity in Christ. The Old Testament, with the exception of the Psalms and Proverbs, quite frankly, scared me, with all the wrath, killing and vengeance.
As I began to grow in my relationship with Christ, the Holy Spirit began to show me that my aversion to the Old Testament was because I did’t understand the reason behind the life lessons of the Old Testament stories. I began to realize the value of reading my Bible in its entirety, using various yearly reading plans. These days it never ceases to amaze me when something I have read many times over stands out at me and I think to myself, “I don’t remember reading this before!” Or, I vaguely remember reading a certain verse or passage and suddenly it becomes crystal clear what the Holy Spirit is whispering to me to apply to my life or my relationship with Him.
Today was no exception! A bit of a back story to what popped out at me today; there was a lady from the area of Shunem and she and her husband made a room on the roof of their house for the prophet Elisha. Whenever Elisha was in the area he would stay with them. During one visit Elisha told the lady of Shunem that about the same time the following year she would have a child, and she did. A few years later the child died and the lady from Shunem called Elisha to come and help her. Elisha came and prayed to God and the child came back to life. This is an amazing miracle, but it isn’t what stood out at me.
Some time and events later, Elisha told the lady of Shunem to take her family and move somewhere else because God was going to cause a famine on Israel for seven years. After the seven years the lady of Shumen and her family moved back to Israel because the famine was over. She was on her way to see the king to ask him to give back her home and her land. At the same time the king was talking to a man named Gehazi, who was Elisha’s servant. Listen in to the conversation the king and Gehazi had.
As she came in, the king was talking with Gehazi, the servant of the man of God. The king had just said, “Tell me some stories about the great things Elisha has done.”And Gehazi was telling the king about the time Elisha had brought a boy back to life. At that very moment, the mother of the boy walked in to make her appeal to the king about her house and land.
“Look, my lord the king!” Gehazi exclaimed. “Here is the woman now, and this is her son—the very one Elisha brought back to life!”
“Is this true?” the king asked her. And she told him the story. So he directed one of his officials to see that everything she had lost was restored to her, including the value of any crops that had been harvested during her absence. 2 Kings 8:4-6.
ONLY God could orchestrate the lady of Shunem going to see the king at the same time the king asked Gehazi to tell him some stories of the great things Elisha had done and Gehazi picks her story to tell. The lady of Shunem wanted only her home and land back but the king also restored to her the value of any crops that had been harvested in her seven year absence! That was God too!!
I know this story, I have read it many times but I never saw God’s lovingkindness in this story until today.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21.