Walk Like the Shunammite
2 Kings 8:1–9:29; Mark 16:1–20; Proverbs 6:28–35
Trust is a fickle matter. What does it take for us to trust another person—especially with our livelihood? Our decision to trust someone can usually be determined by whether we see God in that person.
When the Shunammite woman must decide whether to trust Elisha, it is a simple choice. God has already worked in her life through Elisha—giving her a son and then resurrecting him—so she understands that what he says is from Yahweh. When Elisha says to her, “Get up and go, you and your household, and dwell as an alien wherever you can, for Yahweh has called for a famine, and it will come to the land for seven years,” she trusts him (2 Kgs 8:1). She goes to Philistia (2 Kgs 8:2).
Would we do the same—leave everything and go to a foreign land at one godly person’s word? What does it take for us to trust someone with our lives? What does it take for us to trust God with our lives?
We will probably never encounter the decision the Shunammite woman had to make, but contemplating our answer reveals where we stand with God and others. It’s tempting to answer with a quick, “Of course,” but that would be to ignore the magnitude of her decision, and thus deny the seriousness of what God really asks of us—complete obedience, no matter what, to any degree necessary. Think about that for a moment: any degree necessary (compare Mark 8:34–38).
Are we really willing to acknowledge the gravity of what Jesus did in His death and resurrection (Mark 16:1–10)? Are we willing to live our lives as He intends? Are we willing to go to any place, to trust the word of God completely, to allow God to speak to us directly and through others, and to live passionately for Christ despite the cost?
Are you willing to go wherever God calls you?
JOHN D. BARRY