Wednesday, January 29, 2014

funny if nothing else...

My friend needed an Asian to help her with her presentation this week on some interventions for international brides.. She asked if I could help... this is what she did.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Empty Jars from Neighbors... (OR Happy New Year)

The wife of a man from the company of the prophets cried out to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead, and you know that he revered the Lord. But now his creditor is coming to take my two boys as his slaves.”
Elisha replied to her, “How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have in your house?”
“Your servant has nothing there at all,” she said, “except a small jar of olive oil.”
Elisha said, “Go around and ask all your neighbors for empty jars. Don’t ask for just a few. Then go inside and shut the door behind you and your sons. Pour oil into all the jars, and as each is filled, put it to one side.”
She left him and shut the door behind her and her sons. They brought the jars to her and she kept pouring. When all the jars were full, she said to her son, “Bring me another one.”
But he replied, “There is not a jar left.” Then the oil stopped flowing.
She went and told the man of God, and he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debts. You and your sons can live on what is left.” (1Kings 4:1-7)

This bible story has been brought up more than once in 2 days. I am thinking that God is bringing my attention to this. Some thoughts: 

- The wife instead of losing hope in the God that his husband served, went to the master of his husband, and basically asked for help. There was no blame but a clear need was presented. She was open about her difficulties as well as what she actually had.

- The way that God responds is opposite to self sufficiency. To ask your neighbour for empty jars, there is the element of honesty and humility on the part of the widow as she goes to the neighbours and asks for the jars. But when it comes to doing the "deed", she is asked to go away from the neighbours, to go inside and shut her door. Perhaps shutting the door reminds one that while neighbours can be helpful, they cannot save. Shutting the door focuses on the one the deed, as well as the God who helps during the deed.

- The blessing of neighbours. We are called to love one another. Do i have the type of relationship with my neighbours where i can borrow jars from? How important to love each other even when it is not easy/convenient.

- God fulfills. He comes through during desperate situations... And in very inpredictable ways. i would have thought that the best thing to do would be to giving the widow some money, but no, he uses what the widow has and changes it ino something better.In the process of the difficulty, God seeks to remind the widow that He is God. He understands their situation, and has not forgotten them.          

Good thoughts to start a new year. One that I will continue to be open with God, even on days when i don't understand. This year is a year to focus, to do what is set out in front of me, without too much whining, but with lots of focus on God. Regardless of what I study, I must remember that this faith is also personal. 

A little happy photo to end this post... My little beetle who twirled with me while we waited for the fireworks at 12am. Thank you Jesus for your many blessings. Even for those that I did not think to wish for. This beetle is a blessing here in Europe, she constantly challenges me to be in the present, to remember the most important thing I can give is my time and love...