A Tiny Little Jar

by Karen Wingate based on 2 Kings 4:1-7

“Go ask our neighbors for more jars,” Mama said.

“Why?” Gabriel whined. “I’m tired.”

“But the prophet Elisha said to get lots of jars,” Simeon told his little brother. “If Mama doesn’t give that mean man the money we owe him, we’ll be his slaves. Let’s go.”

The boys brought more jars. Big jars. Little jars. Tall jars. Round jars. 

“Good,” Mama said. “Now bring me one of the jars.” She opened her little jar of oil.

“What are you doing?” Gabriel asked. 

“Weren’t you listening?” Simeon said. “The prophet Elisha . . .”

“I know.” Gabriel frowned. “Elisha said to fill the jars with oil. But Mama, your oil won’t fill even one jar!” 

“Let’s see what happens,” Mama said.

DRIP, DRIP, DRIP. The first jar stood full, with a bit of oil left in the tiny, little jar. 

“Bring me another,” Mama said. 

DRIP, DRIP, DRIP. The second jar stood full, and somehow the tiny, little jar wasn’t quite empty. 

“Hurry!” Mama called. 

The boys brought more jars. Mama kept pouring. 

“Bring another!” Mama wiped sweat from her forehead. 

“They’re all full now!” Simeon said. Just then, the oil stopped dripping. 

Gabriel peered into the tiny, little jar. “Mama! It’s empty,” he said. “God made our tiny bit of oil turn into lots and lots!”  

“Let’s tell Elisha!” Simeon said. 

Elisha smiled. “God does great things for His people,” he said. “Do you know why?” 

“Why?” Gabriel asked. 

“Because He loves us!” Then Elisha turned to Mama. “Sell the oil to pay what you owe, and you can live on the money that’s left.” 

Gabriel and Simeon never forgot the tiny, little jar that God used for something big.


Fill a Jar 

Many families do not have enough money for what they need. Here are three ways you can help: 

Save coins in a jar. Then buy a treat for someone who might need a reason to smile. 

Give outgrown clothes and used toys to a local homeless shelter.  

Ask God to make you a blessing to others each day!

This article originally appeared in the February 2010 issue of Focus on the Family Clubhouse Jr. magazine. Copyright © 2010 by Karen Wingate. Used by permission. Illustration © Lars Justinen/Goodsalt.