A lot is happening in today’s reading, and some familiar stories — some more details on the stories we had read on day 181, Elijah’s exit, Elisha succeeding Elijah, and the Widow and Shunamite women.
It is easy to get lost in the account of the kings of Judah and Israel. I got confused a couple of times that I had to use pen and paper to draw and understand better.
Key learnings for me today:
- Manner of approach matters — When Ahaziah sent his men to Elijah, the approach of the commander of the third set of men was different from the first two. The first two sets met their doom when Elijah commanded fire from heaven to destroy them. The leader of the third set was wise enough to change his approach, and he got the result all commanders wanted — to get Elijah to the king). I wondered why the leader of the 2nd set didn’t consider that. But the lesson is that manner of approach to situations is real. It can aggravate or bring peace to even an already bad situation.
- Elisha focused on what he wanted. Despite those reminding him that his ‘boss’, Elijah, would be taken to heaven, he didn’t let that distract him from the need to see Elijah taken to heaven. In fact, he asked them to be quiet. He wanted Elijah’s blessing, which was his burning desire, more than anything else. In the end, those who monitored the event closely and also reminded him of Elijah’s exit saw the results; they testified to the fact that Elijah’s spirit was on Elisha.
- Jehoshaphat learnt from the event with King Ahab that when he was dealing with Ahab’s son to fight the Moabites, he confirmed by himself that Elisha was God sent. Elisha’s reverence for Jehoshaphat was also unnoticed.
- The faith of the women in today’s reading is so commendable! Even when her son was dead, the Shunammite woman said everything was fine. What faith!
For the first time (or maybe I just didn’t pay attention at church or Sunday school), I read about the deadly stew and the multiplied bread. Jesus also performed this miracle of feeding a multitude with food for one. Today, Elisha fed a hundred men with less than enough bread, and there were remnants after they had eaten. Elisha really did carry a double portion of Elijah’s annointing.