Hello My Name Is… (Week 8) – Shunamite Woman
Hello Mummy Meditators! Welcome to week 8 of our current series, and to a very bizarre part of the story of the Shunamite Woman. We know that last week her son passed away whilst sat on her lap, a very sad week indeed. But this woman was not accepting that – she has a plan, one that possibly God has revealed to her whilst she was sat comforting the boy. This week we see her start to put that plan into action, and this was the verse we were meditating on:
“She called her husband and said, “Please send me one of the servants and a donkey so I can go to the man of God quickly and return.” “Why go to him today?” he asked. “It’s not the New Moon or the Sabbath.” “That’s all right,” she said.” 2 Kings 4:22-23
Odd Odd Odd
Did anyone else read this verse and just think it was plain odd?!! We have a husband who doesn’t ask if his son is alright after he has had to be carried home from helping him in the fields. We have a wife who has just laid her son dead in a bed not telling her husband that, and instead sort of saying everything is alright! In the ESV translation of this verse we read her saying “All is well”!!!! I mean, I don’t know what their life was normally like, but I’d hazard a guess at this not really being a time when all is well.
Hiding the truth for a purpose
All this week the question of whether this story approves hiding the truth/lying has been rolling around in my head. Its a biggie isn’t it? Does the bible approve or disapprove of lying? And what are the parameters around that. The ten commandments come flooding back – thou shalt not give false witness. But clearly her hiding the truth in this situation has a purpose and a reason behind it. It could ultimately save the life of her son.
This woman still had hope that she would see her son alive again, and if she told anyone else they would start funeral proceedings of some sort. If the body was messed with at all then he wouldn’t be able to be alive again. That is probably why she placed his body in the man of God’s room last week – he was unlikely to be discovered by her husband or their servants if he was up there, whereas if he’s been laid in the main house in his bed then he might have been.
In the Facebook Group we discussed some of the times when we need to be discerning with the truth and how much we tell people. Perhaps this is less about lying than about protecting others and God’s plan. Examples included social workers needing to protect vulnerable children, ministers protecting confidences of their congregations and how much we tell kids about aspects of life given their age. There are so many grey areas in this (if you’ve ever read a Jodi Picoult novel you’ll understand this well!) but we do know that the reason the Shunamite Woman has withheld this information is for the good of her son and to save his life – that seems like a good reason to me.
Role Model or Not?
Standing up to her husband, hiding the truth, sticking to her plan with determination and not letting anything stop her from saving her sons life. There are so many things going on in this verse, some good and some bad. One of the mums in our group said that she admired this woman’s DRIVE and that she hasn’t given up yet. When God gives you a word and a plan, do you see it through? Do you keep with it even when your family might not understand? Do you make sure that any obstacles are overcome? There’s a few questions to ponder over today…..
We see the next part of the Shunamite Woman’s plan come into action next week, and we see how she reacts when she reaches the man of God. Will you join me meditating on this verse?
“When she reached the man of God at the mountain, she took hold of his feet. Gehazi came over to push her away, but the man of God said, “Leave her alone! She is in bitter distress, but the LORD has hidden it from me and has not told me why.” “Did I ask you for a son, my LORD?” she said. “Didn’t I tell you, ‘Don’t raise my hopes’?” 2 Kings 4:27-28
I am going to be having a mini party over on the Facebook Group tomorrow night at 9pm, after the amazing news that Mummy Meditations has been shortlisted for the Premier Digital Awards as “Up and Coming”. What an honour, and what a great opportunity to spread the word of Mummy Meditations to even more mums wanting to study the bible with us. See you then!