As I sit out on my front porch watching over my grandchildren, one of them comes to me and climbs up in my lap. I can tell she’s sleepy. As she lays her head on my shoulder, she asks me, “Grandmama, will you tell me again about that pot of oil?”
I smile, because this is their favorite story. And as I start to tell it, the others gather around to listen. It never gets old….
“I never knew how such a small thing, like a knock on your front door, could change your life in an instance.
But it did mine.
Your grandpa had died and left us in deep debt. He didn’t mean to; he loved the Lord and he loved us. But still, it had happened.
I opened the door that day to find the creditors outside, asking for money again. I didn’t have any. There was nothing to sell that would pay the debt, there was no way I could possibly make enough to cover it. So they threatened to make your daddies bondmen. They’d have to work as slaves to pay the debt.
As they left and I closed the door, I turned around to see my boys staring up at me. I decided right then and there that I wasn’t going down without a fight.
So I went to see Elisha.
And he asked me what I had in my house.
All I had was a pot of oil. Just so happened, that was all I needed.
So, I went home and started doing what Elisha told me to do.
And the boys, being typical boys, immediately started asking me all kinds of questions.
“Mama, why does Elisha want us to get a bunch of vessels? Why do they have to be empty?”
“Mama, what are we gonna do with all of them?”
“Mama, what will people think of us, gathering all these pots together?”
“Mama, do you think Elisha knows what he’s doing?”
“Mama, will we ever get enough money in time to pay our debt?”
“Mama, how will our one pot fill all these pots?”
“Mama, I’m tired. How many more are we going to get?”
“Mama, mama, mama….”
So many questions. I didn’t answer them, because I wasn’t entirely sure of the answers myself.
Amazingly, we borrowed a large amount of pots. Just like Elisha said to do, we closed the door behind us, and one after another, we started filling the pots with oil. And the oil just kept coming. It was a miracle!! It took a long time to fill all those pots, it took a lot of work, but finally all the pots were full. There were no more. And the oil stopped pouring. Because, and now this is important, God never wastes His provision. That pot of oil was the only thing of worth I had. But I surrendered it, and God provided the rest.
We went and excitedly told Elisha. He told us to sell the oil, pay the debt and live off the rest. And that’s exactly what we did.”
As I look down into the smiling faces of my grandchildren, I realize my sons and their wives have come to the front door and have listened in on my story. They have tears in their eyes because they realize that God’s provision went far beyond the payment of our debt. It went above what we could’ve ever asked for. God multiplied what I surrendered.
That knock on my door changed my life, because it ushered in a miracle straight from the Lord. And so I dug a well. It’s carried my children through some tough times. And one day, it will my grandchildren, too.
If you’re ever headed this way, in need of something that seems too far out of reach, reach down into this well. I don’t know what your need is. But I know the feeling of needing a miracle. I know the feeling of awe that God would care enough about me to meet that need. And I know the blessing of reaching back into God’s well of provision and finding my needs continually being met by the God of all creation. So go ahead. Draw from this well. You’ll find God’s provision for you, too. And you might just be a little surprised at what God uses to meet your need. A pot of oil is just a pot of oil until faith does the pouring.
I am the widow with the pot of oil