The Widow’s Oil – A Miracle of Faith

Ann H Gabhart Heart of Hollyhill

June 17, 1965

Jocie Brooke here reporting from Hollyhill, Kentucky. I love summer, don’t you? No school. Time to read. No school. Wading in the creek. No school. Picking raspberries. No school! 

We did just have Bible school, but that’s a fun school time. I love Bible school. Dad followed up the idea of learning about the Bible Sunday in his sermon when he asked everybody to think about their favorite Bible story. I think it’s impossible to pick just one. You have to think about all the stories about Jesus – him calming the storm and walking on water and feeding the thousands of hungry people and helping the disciples catch nets full of fish, to name a few. Then there are the disciples with the flames of fire over their heads when the spirit came down on them. We don’t do any shouting in our church. Folks at Mt. Pleasant think reverent means quiet, but I bet there was some shouting going on when the disciples had that spirit filled meeting. Then they all went out and started talking in other languages. 

But Dad wanted us to think about some of the Old Testament stories. Still, there are so many. I like Gideon and the best friends story of David and Jonathan. David has story on story that could be favorites. Oh, and there’s Daniel and lions’ den and his friends in the fiery furnace. So many stories I could write about them all day. 

But I pulled out one that might not be the usual VBS story about the Widow and the jar of oil. You see her husband died and she had two boys and no money. She told Elisha her creditors were going to take her sons in payment of her debt and she was distraught. Elisha asked her what she had. That wasn’t much. Just one pot of oil. But Elisha, a man of God, knew that if she had faith the Lord would be faithful to help her. He told her to go out and borrow every jar and pot she could and then to go into her house and close all the shades and blinds and start filling those jars from her little pot of oil. So she did and the oil didn’t stop pouring out of that pot until the last jar she’d borrowed was full. Then Elisha told her to sell the oil and pay off the people she owed and live on the rest. 

I don’t know why I like that story so much. Maybe because it was God using what she had. Maybe because she only got blessed in the amount of her faith when she went out and borrowed those jars. What if she’d only borrowed one jar? What if she’d thought that was too crazy to try? Or maybe it’s because the sons were there in the story helping her too, witnessing that miracle of faith. Maybe because it has a happy ending. If you want to read the story yourself look up 2 Kings 4:1-7.

Dad says the Bible has a happy ending for us because Jesus made it that way. 

What’s your favorite Old Testament story?