There are some things that we do “just because we can.” Freedom of choice is such a core value in our culture. We are libertarian in nature. We fervently believe that the only thing that should limit our choices is if our action adversely effects or hurts another person. But here is where I am pretty naïve – my actions almost always impact another person.Read More
The Pharisees think that they have Jesus in a Catch 22 situation. If Jesus fails to have the woman caught in adultery stoned he will be disobeying the law, but if he does have her stoned his message of love will be compromised in the eyes of the people. They’re sure they have him. But Jesus does something that turns the tables.Read More compassion, judging, hypocrisy
Sometimes we need to take a step back, and think about how we read as well as what we read. This is one of those times. Today’s chapter is full of allusions and symbolic actions.
Elijah, knowing that he is about to be taken to heaven, first visits the other prophets in Israel, and Elisha doggedly insists on going with him.Read More resurrection, story
After yesterday’s reading, today’s is a simple, uncomplicated, amazing story.
The cultural details may be unfamiliar. In a world with no social security, widows were often destitute. The only resource they had might have been their children, who could be taken as slaves to pay their debts (though God had forbidden the Israelites to do that.)Read More offering, values
Today’s story is meant to be read with yesterday’s. A destitute woman and a wealthy woman. A widow with two sons and a married woman with no son. Elisha, anticipating Jesus, provides for their deepest needs.
Shunem is near Mount Carmel, and obviously a place that Elisha visited frequently.Read More prayer, hospitality
This wonderful story has an interesting complexity. Can you see how the same events are seen by the kings on the one hand and the servant girl and Elisha on the other?
Story One: Kings and military. Aram, or Syria, shared a border with Israel, and the two countries had been at war.Read More power, ordinary people
I sat in my car and cried out to God. I was about to walk into a grade four classroom and was supposed to teach them about Jesus, but my heart wasn’t in it. In fact my heart was very far from being able to do it. I had just spent a sleepless night worrying about a situation in our family. The circumstances were dire and I saw no solution in sight.Read More trust, choice, worry