A Little Cake First
And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son. ~1 Kings 17:13
As a kid, I grew up in my grandparents' and parents' grocery stores. I was very familiar with the major commercial pastries that were popularly sold at that time. Hostess was a major brand name. They were recognized for the Hostess Cupcakes, Hostess Twinkies, and Hostess Snowballs. These pastries were incredibly sweet, delicious, and somewhat addicting (at least to little kids)! I enjoyed eating these pastries every now and then, but I could not imagine eating these little cakes for every meal for a long period of time. Our devotion this morning centers on a “little cake” and how it sustained a prophet, a widow woman, and her son for a long period of time.
We see a diminished resource.
This woman was a widow who was down to her very last handful of meal and a little cruse of oil. She only had enough resources to make a very small cake for her and her son to eat. By her own words, she was down to her very last meal! Things are tough when, by our estimation, we are down to the very last of what we have. Our last dollar, our last morsel, our last bit of strength. When our resources are diminished, things look bad, humanly speaking.
We see a discreet request.
Elijah asked her to make him a little cake. A little cake was something reasonable. It was a flatbread that was the size of a man’s hand. It was not something excessively large. Elijah asked her to do something that he and God knew would be reasonable and within her power. It is interesting to note that whenever God makes a request of us, it is always within reason of what we can do. 2 Corinthians 8:12 tells us, “For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath not.” The key is that there is a willing mind.
We see a distressed reaction.
This widow had an adverse reaction to the request. She told Elijah that she only had a handful of meal and a little cruse of oil and that she only had enough for a last meal with her son. Her reaction was that God was trying to cause her to do something that would further distress her. How often are we susceptible to misunderstanding the requests of God and thinking that He is asking us to do something that is adverse to us? That was far from God’s mind!
We see a dynamic responsibility.
Elijah responded to her reaction by telling her not to fear and to do as she had said, but make him a little cake first, and she and her son would live on the remainder. He was telling her to keep God first! Make Me a little cake first! Make the most of what you have, and place it in My hands. After you have done this, you can take care of yourself and your son. He was telling her to have faith in God’s demand, God’s dependability, and God’s demonstration. Make me a little cake first. Put God first! Keep God first! Go on with your job, but keep God first! Go on with your marriage, but keep God first! Take care of the need in front of you, but keep God first! Faith is never about putting yourself ahead of God. Faith is always about putting God first and afterwards seeing what God will do.
We see a dependable reward.
The handful of meal and cruse of oil did not fail! The woman had enough to sustain her son, herself, and Elijah until the famine was over. God rewarded her feeble faith. She discovered that when we seek the kingdom of God first, all these things will be added unto us. When we exercise faith, God exercises faithfulness.
Are you someone who is having difficulty putting God first? “Fear not; go and do as thou hast said; but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son.” God will take care of you as you take care of putting God first.
Have a God-first God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: 1 Kings 12-14