What would you do? If you had so very little left, and it looked like nothing was coming down the pike, and you were utterly clear the Lord told you to give rather than to keep to yourself the very little that remained, what would you do? What did the widow do? She obeyed. She followed the Lord’s directions. She gave. And what happened? The Lord fulfilled His promise. The rest of her story as it intersects with the prophet Elijah does not end there, and is certainly worth reading. But suffice it to say that as far as her story as it pertains to not having enough is concerned, the point is clear. Obedience to God must come first. God keeps His promises; He always honors His word.
The last thing in the world we might feel like doing when we believe we do not have enough is to give to others. But the Lord is our provider, and He provides what we need to obey Him. Whether it be a prayer for another, a smile to someone hurting, a hug to a widow, a handmade gift to an orphan, a listening ear to a loved one, a word of encouragement to a stranger, a shared meal with a lonely friend, a dollar bill that we would rather spend on ourselves, whatever it may be, may it be as the Lord desires. If we look at how little we believe we have, we might not want to give at all. But when we look to the Lord and remember how much He gives us each and every day, we should be inspired, and reminded, that our love and loyalty and obedience must be to the greatest provider of all – to the Lord.
1Ki 17:1 And Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead, said unto Ahab, As the LORD God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word.
1Ki 17:2 And the word of the LORD came unto him, saying,
1Ki 17:3 Get thee hence, and turn thee eastward, and hide thyself by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan.
1Ki 17:4 And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there.
1Ki 17:5 So he went and did according unto the word of the LORD: for he went and dwelt by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan.
1Ki 17:6 And the ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank of the brook.
1Ki 17:7 And it came to pass after a while, that the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land.
1Ki 17:8 And the word of the LORD came unto him, saying,
1Ki 17:9 Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon, and dwell there: behold, I have commanded a widow woman there to sustain thee.
1Ki 17:10 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, the widow woman was there gathering of sticks: and he called to her, and said, Fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink.
1Ki 17:11 And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand.
1Ki 17:12 And she said, As the LORD thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die.
1Ki 17:13 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son.
1Ki 17:14 For thus saith the LORD God of Israel, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the LORD sendeth rain upon the earth.
1Ki 17:15 And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days.
1Ki 17:16 And the barrel of meal wasted not, neither did the cruse of oil fail, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake by Elijah.