One’s lesson on this passage still carry an iron weight in my heart, he wrote,
“In 2 Kings 4:8-36 there is a beautiful picture of hope in the midst of pain. Elisha longed to bless the Shunammite woman for her kindness, so he promised that in a year she would embrace a son. She protested, begging Elisha not to play games with her heart. A year later she had a son, and he grew until one day he suddenly died.
What do you do in those moments in your life when it feels like what was promised is taken away? The Shunammite asked for a donkey that she might run to the man of God. When her husband asked her why, she simply said, “It is well.” In Hebrew, it is one word, shalom, which means peace, health, welfare, security, safety, wholeness, completion and other connotations.
All was not well. Her son, whom she never dreamed she would bear and then miraculously bore, was now dead. As she approached Elisha, his servant met her and asked her what she wanted. Again all she said was, “It is well” (2 Kings 4:26b, NKJV). This was not a denial of the events or an attempt to give the right religious answer. It was a statement of hope. All was not well, but it is still well.
2 Kings 4:27-28 says, “When she reached the man of God at the mountain, she took hold of his feet.” Gehazi came over to push her away, but the man of God said, “Leave her alone! She is in bitter distress, but the Lord has hidden it from me and has not told me why.”
“Did I ask you for a son, my lord?” she said. “Didn’t I tell you, ‘Don’t raise my hopes?’
I love her response. She ran to the only hope, the man of God. When she arrived, she didn’t hold back how she felt about the circumstances. Can’t you hear her tone? “This was your idea in the first place. You invited me to hope, to dream of having a son, and then this happened. I told you before you did it not to play games with me, and now I am bitterly disappointed.”
But even more amazing was her next phrase. In the midst of bitter distress, she said to the man of God, “As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I will not leave you.” As devastated as she felt, she continued to trust and hope because she knew regardless of what would occur “It is well.” (Source: Elizabeth Gunter Wallace)
* * *
I pray that I would have the faith like the Shunammite woman, able to be honest about the pain and distress and doubts, and to bring them all before God. There are times with the urge of wrestling with the Lord, “Did I ask you for it, didn’t I say, ‘don’t raise my hopes?” Yet amidst of all these wrestling and restlessness, He remains the only resting place where I could draw HOPE from. In visible reality, all don’t seem to be well, but it is still well. As I look head on to the face of the atrocities of Cambodia, as we intercede ceaselessly for that very “one” and the “many”, as we enter into the unknowing challenges of this ministry (frontline and homeside), there seems to be only ONE posture available even as we are in the bitter distress, we are to face our Lord, and say “As surely as the Lord lives, I will not leave you.” As devastated and clueless of what is going on, we are to continue to trust and hope becuase we know regardless of what would occur …
“That’s all right.” 2 Kings 4:23b
“Everything is all right.” 2 Kings 4:26b (TNIV)