EMPTY VESSELSFebruary 2, 2020 2023-04-05 19:12
Bible commentator Watchman Nee wrote, “Because of our proneness to look at the bucket and forget the fountain, God has to frequently change His means of supply to keep our eyes fixed on the source.”55 After Israel entered the Promised Land, the manna ceased to fall into the camp. God changed the way people were provided for (Joshua 5:10-12). In Acts 4:34-35, believers had all they needed, but years later, the saints in Jerusalem had to receive help from the Gentile believers in Antioch (Acts 11:27-30). We need to recognize that these vessels of blessings are mere channels by which God sends His provision for His saints. Guarding our hearts so that we do not rely on these vessels is important. We must rely on God Himself for provision. Elijah’s story with the widow shows us exactly what God can do even with empty vessels.
When we are focused on the empty vessels in our lives, we might find ourselves unable to give our tithes and offering. We operate from a mindset of lack, instead of a mindset of prosperity that as believers God desires for us to have. God wants us to give from a space of abundance because it means we are relying on Him, rather than on our personal abilities.
The fact that the woman was instructed by God to provide for Elijah was not evidence that she was a believer.
The fact that the woman was instructed by God to provide for Elijah was not evidence that she was a believer. God can give orders to pagan kings such as Cyrus (2 Chron. 36:220, and even call him his shepherd (Isa. 44:28).
She may know the Lord, knowing that Elijah was a Jew. However, it is probable that Elijah stayed with her for two years (1 Kings 1). During this time the widow and her son likely turned away from her land’s culture of idol worship. It is also probable they put their faith in the true and living God who was providing for them every day.
The woman had little to offer the prophet — she had a little oil and a handful of barley in a large grain jar or barrel. She was gathering a few sticks to provide fuel for the fire. In this modern society, even when we can purchase food with credit cards or have food delivery, we must remind ourselves that each meal we consume is from the hand of God. “Give us today our daily bread” is not a mindless and meaningless prayer we declare. Instead, it is our declaration that everything we own comes from the Lord.
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