Give Your Best When You're At Your Worst?

Jon Burgess


“And as she was going to get it, he called to her and said, “Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.” So she said, “As the LORD your God lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin, and a little oil in a jar; and see, I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die.”” I Kings‬ ‭17:11-12‬ ‭


In her place of greatest need, at her lowest point, in absolute despair, completely resigned to the inevitable end of their stories, God interrupts the widow with an odd and audacious request: Give me what you have left. Are you serious? They only had enough for one final loaf of bread before she and her son died. Oh, and the drink of water he asked for first... There's a drought going on or hadn't he heard? Why can't Elijah just let them die in peace? Is God simply torturing this poor widow woman like some kid with a magnifying glass watching an ant squirm under the unbearable heat? Or, could this unbearable request at the worst possible time be the unquenchable love of God at the best possible moment? Could the challenge to give be the door that opens the miraculous gift of God to her? Elijah could have told her that her flour would not be used up and that her oil would not run dry before asking for her last loaf of bread. He is a prophet after all. He would have known what was going on to some degree. So why did he ask her to give first?


Why does God ask for the impossible from us before doing the impossible for us? It's a Kingdom principle. Giving when we don't feel like we have anything to give puts us in the best possible place to receive all God has for us. The widow had one plan- eat and die. Her sacrificial giving opened her up to Gods plan- serve this prophet's need and you and your son will live. By putting the need of someone else over and above ourselves we are putting God in the drivers seat and kicking need to the curb. If you are overwhelmed by immense need can I challenge you to do something completely counterintuitive? Find someone you can give to and serve and watch what happens next! For the widow it was miraculous provision. For the young boy who gave all he had for lunch he watched it become enough to feed easily more then 10,000 people and walked home with leftovers to boot (Matt. 14:13-21). Sacrificial Giving precedes Miraculous Living. Why does God ask us to give when it's the last thing we want to do? Because it's the first thing we need to do to see what He's about to do! Jesus puts it this way, "Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For the measure you use, it will be measured to you" (Luke 6:38).


Lord, this is the opposite of how I think. Often I will wait until I'm financial surplus before giving above my weekly tithe. Or I will wait until I have some extra time before volunteering to serve someone. By waiting to give until it's comfortable or convenient I'm actually preventing You from pouring out and pouring through. Please forgive me for getting in the way of what You want to do because I'm only seeing my limitations and not Your limitless resources! Help me to give my best when I'm at my worst so I can see Your best for me come to pass!

Devotions for June 16

1 Kings 17,18,19
Colossians 2

Start Doing Devotions

Devotions are an important part of everyday life. Click here to learn how to do devotions.