And he (her husband) said, “Why will you go to him (the prophet) today? It is neither new moon nor sabbath?” And she said, “It will be well.” II Kings 4:23
We aren’t told her name. Only that she was a Shunnamite and had no child. Elisha the prophet told her she would have a child and sure enough, she did. The story tells us that when the child was grown, he developed a headache and died in his mother’s lap. She laid the boy on Elisha’s bed and set out to find the prophet. She told her husband she was going to find the prophet and hence the question of why. I find it interesting that she did not tell him about their son. The only words she had to say in response to his question were “It will be well.”
What incredible faith! How can one say it will be well when their son has just died? Commentaries point out that for believers even in death we can say it will be well and we can; we know heaven is real. But I don’t believe this is where this woman’s faith was directed. I believe she was believing that the God who promised her a son could resurrect her son.
She also showed wisdom. She didn’t faint, scream, yell, start making arrangements. She didn’t even tell anyone, not even her husband. Wow! I am not advocating keeping something like this from your husband, but there are times when we are believing for a miracle that it is wisdom to be very careful with our sharing. She responded to his question with words of faith and went in search of Elisha. Too many times when we are given bad news, well-meaning people, family and friends begin the questions – what are you going to do? What’s the prognosis? We tend to want to talk the problem, not the solution. It is OK to say, it will be well even in the face of evidence to the contrary.
This woman saved her words for the prophet, the one who could stand with her in faith, believing for a miracle.
Elisha came to the house, prayed to the Lord and stretched himself out on the boy and the boy’s flesh became warm. Elisha got up walked back and forth in the house one time, stretched himself out on the boy again. This time the boy sneezed 7 times and opened his eyes!
Elisha turns to the woman and says, “take up your son”.
The woman receives back her son and worships God.
I can’t even begin to imagine that scene. The faith this woman demonstrates is remarkable. Her wisdom, admirable. We can learn from her. She knew who to turn to when bad news hit. She knew to keep her eyes and her thoughts on the solution, not the problem, even a problem as huge as a son’s death. And her faith became sight and she took up her son and went home!
Thank You Lord, that You are the same yesterday, today and forever. You are still in the miracle-working business, still bringing life out of death. Touch areas of my life that need new life, I pray. Point me to people who can stand with me in faith and help me to be someone others can trust when bad news comes. Help me to stand in faith, to speak what is necessary and no more and to use wisdom while I wait for my day to take up what has been taken from me. In Jesus’ name, Amen
I would love to hear from you. Please let me know if I can be praying for you also.