2 Kings 4:8-17

The Shunammite Woman

Now there came a day when Elisha passed over to Shunem, where there was a [b]prominent woman, and she persuaded him to eat [c]food. And so it was, as often as he passed by, he turned in there to eat [d]food. She said to her husband, “Behold now, I perceive that this is a holy man of God passing by us continually. 10 Please, let us make a little walled upper chamber and let us set a bed for him there, and a table and a chair and a lampstand; and it shall be, when he comes to us, that he can turn in there.”

11 [e]One day he came there and turned in to the upper chamber and [f]rested. 12 Then he said to Gehazi his servant, “Call this Shunammite.” And when he had called her, she stood before him. 13 He said to him, “Say now to her, ‘Behold, you have been [g]careful for us with all this [h]care; what can I do for you? Would you be spoken for to the king or to the captain of the army?’” And she [i]answered, “I live among my own people.” 14 So he said, “What then is to be done for her?” And Gehazi [j]answered, “Truly she has no son and her husband is old.” 15 He said, “Call her.” When he had called her, she stood in the doorway. 16 Then he said, “At this season [k]next year you will embrace a son.” And she said, “No, my lord, O man of God, do not lie to your maidservant.”

17 The woman conceived and bore a son at that season [l]the next year, as Elisha had said to her.

This passage reminds me of something very important we should remember when we pray. It’s easy to look at this and go, “wow, Elisha could ask God anything, and God just did it!” But the truth is that Elisha was in tune to the voice of God. He knew that God had placed the Shunammite woman and her husband in his life for a reason, and it wasn’t just to provide a convenient stopping place where he could rest on his travels.

So he began to probe for answers, to see what God wanted to do in this woman’s life. It didn’t take long, and Gehazi pointed out the obvious, that they had no son, and the husband was potentially no longer fertile. With this information, Elisha knew exactly what God wanted for them, and thus he tells the Shunammite what God would do for her. Not what he would do, it was only something God could do.

Thus it is in our lives and in our prayers, it is our task to seek the will of God, that we know how to pray. Whether it be for our lives, or for others, the most important thing we can seek is for God to show up in the situation. We may not have any idea what that will look like, or he might tell us exactly what He plans to do. But if we aren’t seeking His will, we’re going to be in a pickle, unsure of anything at all. So it was that Jesus himself taught his disciples to pray and included “your kingdom come, your will be done…” Seek and you will find, His will and design for your life. Not always in overt ways, sometimes He will just guide you through every day “happenings”, but God will surely be your guide when you ask.

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