Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Widow's Might

Sunday's lectionary readings nailed my state of mind right to the cross.

I walked into Mass with a heavy heart.

My husband says, "Oh Martha. Your heart is troubled by many things."

It's true.

Is it unwise to send our sons to college when we have a great big house where they could live rent free?

The money we invest in dorm life, tuition, and meal plans could add a few zeroes to our mortgage payments.

Not to mention, the house is half empty.

Why did I push for that expansion on our tiny dwelling when we were bursting at the seams?

No doubt, we enjoy the space. Holidays are fun. We spread out. We eat, we laugh. We play Dance Revolution.

We snuggle on the comfy great room sofa.

But we have more than enough, and we're paying for it.

Will our sons be able to find jobs with a printed diploma?

If the economy collapses, will also our home?

"Oh ye of little faith," I am hoping the Holy Spirit is the one consoling, and not myself.

We live by faith, not by sight. What better way to prove our trust in God than in a society that seems to be bottoming out?

I do the math. One jar. A bit of flour and oil. One mother and son.

A paradox. An irony. A seemingly impossible reality.

She has only enough for one more meal before she and her son starve and die.

And here is Elijah instructing her to trust in what she can't see.

He puts her to the test asking her to make him the cake instead, and then afterword, feed herself and her son. How scary!

She has nothing to lose. What is one last meal anyway?

She obeys.

God provides. Beyond famine in the land. Beyond her lowly status. Beyond hunger.

And she went and did as Elijah said. And she and he and her household ate for many days. The jar of flour was not spent, neither did the jug of oil become empty, according to the word of the LORD that he spoke by Elijah. The bin of flour was not used up, nor did the jar of oil run dry, according to the word of the Lord which He spoke by Elijah.
Elijah and Widow Zarephath from 1 Kings 17:8-16

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