The problem is that my niece is now twenty-six and I still have the wrapping paper!
It’s not like I haven’t been using it. I have been using it now for what, sixteen years? It just never seems to go away. It reminds me of Elisha’s widow’s oil.
For those of you unfamiliar with the story from 2 Kings 4:1-7, here is a summary with some parts taken from The Message:
(First of all, note that Elisha is a prophet for the Northern Kingdom of Israel.)
A widow called out to Elisha, telling him that her husband was dead and that Elisha knew what a good and devoted man he was. She said, “And now the man to whom he was in debt is on his way to collect by taking my two children as slaves.”
Elisha said, “I wonder how I can be of help. Tell me, what do you have in your house?”
“Nothing,” she said. “Well, I do have a little oil.”
“Here’s what you do,” said Elisha. “Go up and down the street and borrow jugs and bowls from all your neighbors. And not just a few—all you can get. Then come home and lock the door behind you, you and your sons. Pour oil into each container; when each is full, set it aside.”
She did what he said. She locked the door behind her and her sons; as they brought the containers to her, she filled them. When all the jugs and bowls were full, she said to one of her sons, “Another jug, please.”
He said, “That’s it. There are no more jugs.”
Then the oil stopped.
She went and told the story to the man of God [Elisha]. He said, “Go sell the oil and make good on your debts. Live, both you and your sons, on what’s left.”
The widow’s faith and obedience allowed God to provide for her and her sons.
Even though I might be a bit tired of the frog wrapping paper now, it is a wonderful reminder of God’s provision for me.A small sacrifice years ago has always provided me wrapping paper in a pinch.
And while a small sacrifice and a step of obedience may not be rewarded with a surplus of wrapping paper or oil, it is always rewarded with a lifetime of blessings.