Title: From Sunday’s Sermon – “Don’t Panic”

September 26, 2011

Our sermon this week comes from 2 Kings 4:8-37.  In this passage, a well-to-do Shunammite woman, who recognizes that the prophet Elisha is a holy man of God, builds a room onto her house specifically so he will have a comfortable place to stay when he is in their town.  Due to her faithfulness, she is blessed by God. 

 With the price of food spiking, increased unemployment worldwide and almost every country being effected by challenges, uncertainty is widespread among many people.  Even through all of this perceived upheaval, the Lord has great plans.  These plans are backed up by the assurance that God can handle ANYTHING.  Nothing is more powerful or greater than God’s presence among us.  Change is inevitable and change is the nature of our existence.  Without change, we are dead.  On the other hand, change has a way of distracting us and thus completely throwing us off track.  Even though the end of this 2 Kings passage results in a child brought back to life, the message is far deeper.  This passage points more toward how a faithful woman responds to change when her blessing gets interrupted.  She trusted God no matter what and she knew what to do when her blessing gots interrupted.  Today’s sermon, by Pastor Dudley, provides us with 3 ways in which we, like the Shunammite woman, can trust God no matter what and how to take the correct steps when our blessing from God gets interrupted.

First, we must Put the Problem in Prophetic Prospective.  The birth of a son was a blessing to this Shunammite woman, a blessing due to her faithfulness.  Crisis struck her blessing.  When a crisis strikes our blessings from God, it affects us because life no longer appears to be smooth sailing.  Be sure to define what the problem means to you so you won’t get hung up on how things only appear.  Otherwise, you will miss what God is doing and you will remain in the role of the victim during the crisis.  The circumstances of the crisis aren’t important.  Before we make a move during a crisis, we must wait on God and not try to rush God to move.  We must connect what God has given to us to what we’ve given to God.  If we spend too much time focusing on what’s wrong, we will not be able to experience what’s good in our lives.   In this passage, once the woman accessed the situation, she gave the crisis, her nearly dead child, to God by placing the child on the bed in the room she built onto her house for the man of God, the prophet Elisha.  By the closing the door to the room where the child was, she was putting distance between the crisis she gave to God and herself.

Second, we must Revisit the Contract.  As you may know, not everyone is going to value the blessing God gave you.  Remember, what has for you is for you!  In reading this passage, her husband doesn’t take time to tend to their son even though the son came to him father first.  He tells one of their servants to take the boy to his mother.  If you notice, the passage did not state the woman took time to fuss or discuss with her husband his actions or his demeanor.  She just did what she needed to be do.  We must not get distracted by someone else’s reaction or lack of action during a crisis.  God gave the blessing to her.  We must be mindful of what God said and evaluate the circumstances of the crisis based upon that alone and not solely on what the situation appears to look like.  We need to fight for what God gave us!  We’ve got it written in blood!  Go back to God’s promises to us: peace, grace, love, lack of separation, etc.

Lastly, we must Let the Word work Without our Interference.   Once the Shunammite woman reaches Elisha and brings him back to her home, her son is dead.  She doesn’t fall apart and cave under the pressure of her crisis.  Elisha was capable of miracles and he was a very influential man of God.  He knew he didn’t need her help with this crisis but more importantly, she knew he didn’t need her help so she acted accordingly.  She stepped back.  Elisha was more able to close out the distractions that could keep him from doing God’s work.  As a result, he was able to bring her son, her blessing, back to life.  In our crisis moments, we need to take our hands off and make space for God to work.  In our lives, our own problems don’t always end with a happy, predictable, tidy outcome.  This story is about our ability to let God work in our crisis moments.  Let God be God!  If you gave your crisis to God, give God space to carry out God’s Will.  We should not get caught up in our problems and cry the blues, we should trust God in all circumstances.

 Do you seem to be catching flack and experiencing crisis’ in areas of your life God has blessed?  Do you sometimes get distracted by what things appear to look like?   Are you able to step back and truly give it to God? 

As always, your comments are appreciated and welcomed.

© Kevin Dudley

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