Read: 1 Kings 19:19-21
So Elisha turned back from following him. Then he took the team of oxen and slaughtered them. Using the equipment from the oxen as fuel, he cooked the meat and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he got up, followed Elijah, and served him.
1 Kings 19:21 (EHV)
Are You All In?
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
“Are you in or out?” Jacob wasn’t sure. Was he going to go with his friends on the roller coaster or not? Jacob had ridden roller coasters before, but The Shark had a reputation for high speeds, deep dives, and extreme turns. The ride was a lot bigger, a lot faster, and a lot higher than anything Jacob had ever ridden. As his friends ran to get in line for the ride, Jacob paused. “Am I in or out? If I join my friends, I can’t turn back. If I stay here, will I ever go on this ride? I want to ride this ride, but do I really?” Jacob looked up, swallowed a big gulp of air, and ran ahead to join his friends. He was all in… and loved the ride!
Leading up to today’s Word of God, Elijah served the Lord faithfully for many years. His work was difficult because God sent him to face his enemies. Yet the time had come for someone else to take his place as prophet. So God sent Elijah to find a man named Elisha. Elisha was getting fields ready for planting. Elijah ran over to let Elisha know that he was going to be God’s new prophet. Was he in or out? The work would not be easy. Elisha would also have to face God’s enemies. People would reject his message, even threaten his life. Yet, many would trust in the true God through his work. So was Elisha in or out? He could have said, “I’m out,” but Elisha was all in. He held a big barbecue for his family, then left with Elijah to become a prophet.
Here’s where you fit in to today’s Word of God. Jesus has not called you to be his prophet, but he has called you to follow him. Are you in or out? Jesus wants followers who love him more than anything or anyone else in the world. Jesus wants followers who are willing to leave everything behind to be with him. On our own, we could never do it. We would fail. We would have to say, “I’m out, Lord!” Yet we have a Savior who was “all in” for us. Jesus left all the glory and comfort of heaven behind because he knew that he had to give up everything, even his own life, to save us from sin and death. Because of his super love for us, we now follow Jesus through faith. With his help, we are “all in.”
Lord God, you call us to follow you, even giving up everything to be with you. Forgive us when we have not been all in. Help us through faith in Jesus to follow you now and always. Amen.
The questions below are to help families discuss this devotion. The questions are divided by age group as suggestions, but anyone could reflect on any of the questions as they desire.
Questions for Younger Children
- What does it mean to be “all in”?
- How was Jesus “all in” for us?
Questions for Elementary Age Children
- Why did Elisha need to be “all in” to become a prophet?
- What makes it hard for you and me to be “all in” as a follower of Jesus?
Questions for Middle School and Above
- Elisha left behind his family and wealth to become a prophet. Consider two things that you might have to give up in order to be “all in” on following Jesus.
- How can Elisha serve as a model of commitment for you as you follow Jesus?