‘Make room for Jesus the anointed one and allow Him to furnish your life with the essentials for successful living.’
Recently I have been reading 2 Kings 4, which tells the story of a notable woman who was so blessed by the ministry of the prophet Elisha that she not only extended her hospitality to him, but she and her husband built a room in their house specifically for him to stay in when he visited.
There are so many lessons for us in this story! I believe that Jesus also wants to visit us, but He doesn’t want to briefly stop by. Instead He wants to abide in us, dwell in us. But, are we willing to make room for Him? In Timothy 3:17, we are reminded as God’s people to be ‘thoroughly furnished unto all good works.’
In 2 Kings 4, we are told that the noblewoman furnished Elisha’s room simply with a bed, a table, a stool and a candlestick. Sometimes, God’s Word does not give us much detail, but in this story, these 4 items are mentioned quite clearly. I wonder if those items have a meaning? As I looked into the text, I felt the room was designed to be simple and uncluttered. It was to be the place where a great man of God slept and prayed, and it was important that the room did not have any distractions. Did the simple items of furniture have any symbolic meaning too? Here are my thoughts on what these items could represent.
Well, for most of us, our bed is a place of rest. On tiring days, it is the place we look forward to sinking into. Rest and peace are important ingredients in our spiritual lives to help keep us strong and replenished for what lies ahead. Sometimes if my grandchildren are staying over, I will get up in the middle of the night to check on them. There is something wonderful about watching how peacefully young children sleep, and I wonder if this is how God views us when He watches over us as we sleep too? Rest and proper recuperation from all that life brings our way is very important. It was important for Elisha in his simply furnished room, and it is important for us too to make sure we de-clutter of anything that would rob us of His peace.
The table represents a place of communion and fellowship. Many of us often sit at a table to enjoy dinner with our family or with friends, and communion is another important ingredient of a healthy spiritual life. We need to make time not just for the physical act of taking communion but also to commune with God: to spend time in His presence, fellowshipping with Him and getting to know His heart.
It is not easy to sit comfortably on a stool! It usually means that we have to sit very still, and in this story, I think the stool could represent stillness. Sometimes, we need to learn how to shut out the noise and busyness of the world around us and sit in the quiet. Many of us will be familiar with the story of Mary and Martha when Jesus arrived at their home. Martha was busy, running about, preparing for the arrival of Jesus and didn’t know how to stop. Mary, on the other hand, was able to drop everything she was doing and just sit at the feet of Jesus and listen. I do not know about you, but I want to be like Mary, not Martha. I want to be still and give Him all the attention that He deserves.
Well, candles always represent light, and particularly light in darkness. In the middle of a power cut, a candle pierces through the darkness, but in a spiritual sense, we too are called to be candles in a dark world. We certainly live in turbulent times where many are looking for light to help direct their paths, and yet, too often, they are following the first light they see. What if we as God’s people, started walking as blazing candles, helping to point the world to the true source of eternal light?
The simple furnishings in Elisha’s room represent to me many of the ingredients for a healthy spiritual life. My prayer for myself (and for you!) is that we will each take the time to rest, be still, and learn how to truly commune with the heart of God.