"Elisha replied to her, 'How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have in your house?'
"'Your servant has nothing there at all,' she said, 'except a little oil.'"
~2 Kings 4:1-2 [emphasis mine ~ KW<><]
Bad economies effect everyone ~ and even in the best of economies there are people who, for whatever reasons, struggle with providing for their families.
Saving money and wanting to take care of my family the best that I could on one income is the biggest reason I started cooking for from scratch and making my own house-hold products, skin and health care, and home remedies. Then, when my husband was laid-off and our finances where devastated in '99, my homemade everything . . . was in large part why we still have our home, today (before I went back to working outside the home). (You can read about this and my thoughts on handling hard times HERE.)
One of the things that is so appealing and convenient about making your own house-hold, home-care goodies is that on any given day, you already have the ingredients on-hand to make what you need. Just like the woman who came to Elisha for help . . .
She was in dyer straights, for sure, but it took Elisha to make her focus on what she already HAD rather than what she DID NOT HAVE. And don't forget that we serve a mighty God Who owns the cattle on a thousand hills! (Psalm 50:10) He ultimately supplies all of our needs and sometimes it takes someone who has once walked in our shoes to help us SEE what we actually have.
So, when Elisha asked her, "what do you have in your house?" all she could think of was "nothing . . . except a little oil." A little oil. To her, that little bit of oil and maybe a pinch of flour was all she had to feed her family with; but . . . Elisha was about to give her a great lesson in how God can make our faith into something tangible.
God caused that little bottle of oil to flow until it filled every jar in her house! "They brought the jars to her and she kept pouring. When all the jars were full . . . " (2 Kings 4:5[b]-6) Did you get that? "When ALL the jars were full"! We don't know how many jars she had, but it was enough that after she sold some to completely pay off her bills that Elisha told her "You and your sons can live on what is left." (2 Kings 4:7[b]) She already had all that was necessary.
What do you have that is necessary? A few herbs and spices? Then you can make tasty seasonings to change-up a tired old recipe; you can make healing herb tea blends.
Do you have any baking soda and liquid castile soap? Then you have the makings of the best soft scrub cleaner you've ever used. Do you have aloe vera gel and tea tree oil? Then you will never have to make hand sanitizer again. Do you have liquid castile soap, tea tree oil and a water source? Then you can make the best disinfecting spray cleaner ever. Add several drops of your favorite essential oil (or blend) to distilled water in a little spray bottle and you have just made your new favorite air freshener. Do have coconut oil and arrowroot powder in your cupboard and an empty deodorant stick? Then you have the makings of homemade solid deodorant. Do you have a hand-full of dried chamomile and coconut oil? Then you can make a very simple, soothing, healing chamomile salve for your family's boo-boos and dry skin.
Just when we start to panic, just when we think, "I have nothing;" that's when we discover that we actually have all that is necessary.
Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><