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2 Kings 4:38-41, Elisha Purifies the Pot of Stew

Narrative Lectionary Key Verse for Today

He said, “Then bring some flour.” He threw it into the pot, and said, “Serve the people and let them eat.” And there was nothing harmful in the pot.
— 2 Kings 4:41

NL Daily Devotion for Friday, November 9, 2018

 clay mug made from dirt cakes

by Dr. Kimberly Leetch, Clergy Stuff


Elisha’s people were starving. Not like when we rummage through the fridge 5 times hoping something will stand out for us if we just look again. No, they were truly starving. It’s no wonder they cooked up gourds without really knowing what they were or what they might do if eaten. When it appeared the stew was not good for eating, Elisha purified the pot, making the stew edible for all.

Some of my friends and family went to Feed My Starving Children recently. It’s an organization we volunteer for regularly. We help package vitamins, dried veggies, soy, and rice to feed kids in underprivileged countries. While there, we learn that some of the kids’ parents will feed them dirt cakes — dirt, water, oil, and salt — to fool their tummies into thinking they’re getting food, even though there’s no nutritional value at all. Their hunger is temporarily satisfied, but their bodies are still starving — eating themselves from the inside out. The food we package gives kids the nutrition they need to survive and thrive.

FMSC has opportunities for volunteers and staff to purchase fair trade goods that support the working adults in those same communities. At our recent trip, I saw a beautiful, handmade mug — made out of the same clay that the parents used to make dirt cakes. How cool is that?


Narrative Lectionary Daily Reading:

2 Kings 4:38-41

When Elisha returned to Gilgal, there was a famine in the land. As the company of prophets was sitting before him, he said to his servant, “Put the large pot on, and make some stew for the company of prophets.” One of them went out into the field to gather herbs; he found a wild vine and gathered from it a lapful of wild gourds, and came and cut them up into the pot of stew, not knowing what they were. They served some for the men to eat. But while they were eating the stew, they cried out, “O man of God, there is death in the pot!” They could not eat it. He said, “Then bring some flour.” He threw it into the pot, and said, “Serve the people and let them eat.” And there was nothing harmful in the pot.

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