(Read Luke 4:22-27 and 1 Kings 17:7-16)
This morning we continue our series, “Grace that is Simply Amazing” by continuing our mini-series entitled, “Grace Based Success (Prosperity)”. Today’s message continues to flow in the same vein as the last four. This morning we will look at the example of the widow in Zarephath.
Jesus said, “During the time of Elijah it did not rain in Israel for three and a half years. There was no food anywhere in the whole country. There were many widows in Israel during that time. But the fact is, Elijah was sent to none of those widows in Israel. He was sent only to a widow in Zarephath, a town in Sidon.”
So what does this mean to you today? A few things.
1. If you are a man/woman of honor, blessings will come looking for you.
a) When honor is not an issue for you, the Lord knows He can send His blessing to you, because you will honor Him enough to receive it, even when it costs you something.
b) The Lord had Elijah declare judgment over king Ahab. The prophet said it would not rain until he said it would rain. The rain stopped. During this time the Lord sent ravens to bring Elijah food every morning and every evening, and he drank water from a brook. When the brook dried up the Lord said to Elijah, “Go to Zarephath in Sidon and stay there. There is a widow there that I commanded to take care of you.”
c) The widow Zarephath was suffering through the extreme drought, just like everyone else. But she honored God and the Lord spoke to her during the time of famine. The Lord told her He was sending a prophet to her home and she was to take care of him.
d) Because she was a woman of honor, the Lord sent the blessing to her when she needed it the most.
2. When you are a man/woman of honor you are able to receive from God, even when your blessing comes disguised as something else.
a) The Lord had already told Elijah there was a widow in Zarephath whom He had commanded to bless him. But when Elijah arrived the widow was making preparations for her and her son to eat their last meal and die. This hardly seems like a person who is prepared to be a blessing.
b) The Lord had already told the widow in Zarephath that she was going to be blessed by His servant. But when Elijah arrived he came with empty hands and an empty stomach. Instead of coming with gifts he came asking for food. This hardly seems like a person who is prepared to be a blessing.
c) Although neither person (Elijah nor the widow) seemed like a person who was in position to BE a blessing, both Elijah and the widow honored God enough to see what would happen. And guess what? The blessing flowed!
3. You must honor God enough to do and say what He leads you to do and say.
a) When Elijah arrived at the widow’s house all she had left was a handful of flour and a little bit of oil. She was gathering a few pieces of wood to make a little piece of bread for her and her son. She said to Elijah, “My son and I will eat it and then die from hunger.”
b) Although the woman was in a dire situation, Elijah had to honor God enough to say what the Lord led him to say. Elijah said, “Go home and cook your food as you said. But first make a small piece of bread from the flour that you have and bring it to me. Then cook some for yourself and your son.” If you are not spiritual, that would sound like a cruel thing to say to a woman who is preparing to die. But when you are led of God you cannot be led of emotions. Elijah honored the Lord enough to say what God told him to say.
c) Elijah went on to say, “The Lord, the God of Israel, says, ‘That jar of flour will never be empty and the jug will always have oil in it. This will continue until the day the Lord sends rain to the land.’” The widow honored the Lord enough to do what the prophet said. She made him a piece of bread first. And with that, with her obedience, with her honor for God and His servant, the woman and her son supernaturally ate from that jar of flour and jug of oil until the Lord sent the rain.
d) This situation required honor from a widow. She had to honor God enough to do what the prophet said, even when it made no sense at all. Jesus’ point was that the Lord had to send Elijah all the way to Sidon, because none of the widows in Israel would have honored Elijah enough to do what this widow did.
e) If the Lord has a blessing that required honor to receive, could He send it to your house? Do you honor the Lord enough to do what He says through His servants, even when it does not make any sense? If you do, blessings will come looking for you!
Closing Confession: Father, I thank You for teaching me about Your grace and my requirement to live by faith. Your blessing is freely made available to me. You want to freely bless me by Your amazing grace. While Your blessing comes by grace, I must use my faith to receive it and part of my faith requires honor. You are an honorable God and You expect Your children to live honorable lives. Since honor is Your culture and You live in me, I declare that I am a person of honor. I honor You and Your representatives in the earth. I am open to do and say whatever You lead me to do and say. I am open to receive and submit to whatever You lead me to receive and submit to. You are a Spirit. Therefore, You are spiritual and not sensual. Your instructions will not always make sense. But since I am a person of honor, I position myself to receive from You, even when it does not make sense. I walk by faith and not by sight. I live my life by the unseen and not the seen. I shall experience heaven on earth, because honor keeps my heart in position to receive from the realm of the unseen. Your Kingdom has come. Your will shall be done, on earth, as it is in heaven, through me, for Your glory! I declare this by faith. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
This is Today’s Word! Apply it and Prosper.