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Second Chance at Life 3

1 Kings 17:12
“As surely as the LORD your God lives,” she replied, “I don’t have any bread—only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it—and die.”

A widow, depressed because of the drought and famine in the land and because of the emptiness of her kitchen, decided to make one last loaf of bread for herself and her son before they die. Elijah asked her to make him a small loaf first so that her supply of flour and oil would never run out until it rained again.

That makes me think of the verse in Exodus 22:22, “Do not take advantage of the widow or the fatherless.” But in 1 Kings 17:7-24, Elijah never intended to take advantage of her. He was obeying God, and he wanted to bless her and prosper her by helping her act on her faith in God.

Staring at empty shelves in the fridge makes you feel the emptiness in your belly. If you had practically nothing in your kitchen, would you do as this widow did and plan your last meal? Or would you spend time reading the Bible, listening to God, and worshiping him rather than focusing on your lack?

God is more real than the lack in your life. When God is more real to you than what you feel, it’s easier to trust and listen to his plan.

The widow had to obey God’s plan as spoken by the prophet. You can obey God when you learn to listen to him. You can listen to him better when you stop listening to the distracting noise of lack in your life.

The widow and her son who were given a second chance to live out their faith in God had to change the way they were living in order to take advantage of the lessons learned from the prophet. When we get a second chance, we have to take the “do-over” seriously. We have to change something in how we respond to the situation or we’ll waste the opportunity.

Today, you and I must take a look at lessons we learn in life and make changes in order to apply those life lessons.

Second Chance at Life 2

John 8:3-4
The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery.”

When I read this story, I always think it’s funny that the man wasn’t caught in adultery, just the woman. But Jesus had mercy on the woman. He forgave her. At the same time, he chose not to give a small sermon about how many men in that place had been with her or with women like her. He was allowing the men time to recognize on their own that they were pots calling the kettle black. They had no business accusing her.

Jesus was the only one without sin, and he didn’t accuse anyone.

That woman was given a second chance in life. She was told to leave her life of sin, and I imagine that’s just what she did. I wonder if her accusers did.

If her story makes you think of a sin in your life, you can receive forgiveness today. You can walk away from your sin and start a new relationship with Jesus.

His hands are open to you.

Second Chance at Life 1

John 11:32
When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”
December is a busy month. We want to shop for special things to give to those we love. We want to go to Christmas parties. But we also want to have time to sit with Jesus and worship him.

How do we make time for everything we want to do? Yesterday’s To Do list has become a Wish I Had list. We wish we had done more to show love and help others. We wish we had invested in people more often.

When we read about Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead, we see a picture of his sisters telling Jesus they wish he’d been there before Lazarus died. But Jesus didn’t have a Wish I Had list.

He only did what he was supposed to do. He knew he was going to raise Lazarus from the dead before he ever died. There was a purpose for it or it wouldn’t have happened.

God makes his plans work out so that we see him with a new perspective. He wants us to get to know him better.

God’s plans are always better than our plans, but they don’t look anything like our plans. No wonder God laughs at our plans.

Do you need a second chance at life? When Jesus raised Lazarus back to life, Lazarus had a second chance to do things he should’ve done before. He had a second chance to listen to and obey Jesus.

We don’t have to be raised from the dead to start our life over. We can submit to God today and begin a new relationship with Jesus.