Afraid To Ask
Posted: Thursday, June 22
2 Kings 3:1-4:17
Verse of the day:
Elisha said to Gehazi, “Tell her, ‘We appreciate the kind concern you have shown us. What can we do for you? Can we put in a good word for you to the king or to the commander of the army?’” (2 Kings 4:13)
Have you ever wanted something so bad that you were afraid to admit it? You wanted it so bad that it would hurt too much to admit that you wanted it and to never get it. So you try to remain silent and convince yourself that you don’t really want it; that it is not that important. But it is. It keeps you up at night and drives your daydreams. It is constantly a longing in the pit of your soul or the back of your mind. You know that you will never be complete without it, yet you are afraid to ask for it. So you suffer, alone in your thought. Or at least that is what you think is happening.
The verse of the day today comes out of a great little story in 2 Kings Chapter 4. Here we meet a women from the town of Shunem, a small town in the northern kingdom of Israel. Shunem is still there today, a small town just a bit south of Nazareth. Long before the Son of God would roam the streets of the nearby towns, a wealthy family had begun to build a relationship with the prophet of god, Elisha, and would be a place where he could plan on grabbing a meal as he passed by that way. The story is all about how this lady was willing to give to be a blessing to others. She would even add a room to the house to give the man of God a place to say. This is story about giving, not receiving. However, you cannot out give God.
Elisha was so moved by the generosity of the woman that he wanted to do something nice for her. He offers to use his influence and connections to the kings and generals to bless her family. However, earthly connections were not on the mind of the woman. She wanted something, but was afraid to even ask. She could not bear it if she was to ask and be turned down. You see, I am sure she had asked God hundreds of times. The fact that he had never answered seemed like an answer enough. It was never going to happen, so why hope? Why ask?
The woman at Shunem did not bless the prophet so that she could manipulate God to her will. She did not act to try and barter with God. She gave. So God Gave. She gave a meal and a room. What she wanted was to be a mother. Since she did not have her own children, she gave away what she desired. She longed to love and care for her own child. Since she did not have one, she gave away the love and care instead of holding it all inside. Because she was willing to give away what she cherished, God gave what her heart desired. God gave a child.
So many of us have it backwards. We want things and are too afraid to ask for them so we try and hold onto the little we have. Instead, we should be more like this woman. She gave away that which she wanted the most. If she did not have a child to love, she would find someone to love and care for. God saw past her fear and saw her desperation. Do you want friends? Then give away friendship. Do you want a child? Give your heart to other children. Stop being afraid to ask and start being brave enough to give. Give and it will be given, every time.