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Study Questions for Elijah and the Widow

1 Kings 17:1-16 Elijah and the Widow

  1. Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you felt like you had very little to offer to someone in need? How did you respond to that situation?

  2. The sermon discussed the widow's initial hesitation to offer hospitality or blessing due to her own perceived lack. Can you relate to this feeling of inadequacy when it comes to helping others? How do you typically overcome this feeling, if at all?

  3. Reflecting on the story of Elijah and the widow, what do you think motivated the widow to offer hospitality to Elijah despite her own desperate situation? (Cultural expectation or pressure? Faithfulness? Generosity? Etc.?) Have you ever experienced a similar impulse to help others even when you felt lacking yourself?

  4. Our acts of kindness or hospitality toward others might be part of God's larger plan for other’s lives. Can you think of a time when someone's small gesture or act of kindness unexpectedly impacted your life in a significant way?

  5. Henri Nouwen's statement, "poverty makes a good host," suggests that when we recognize our own limitations, we become more open to sharing what little we have with others. Do you agree? Have you ever been in a situation with limited resources and it resulted in you being more open to sharing with others?

  6. The sermon shared examples of unexpected gifts or blessings that guests might bring into our lives. Can you recall a time when someone you showed kindness to brought an unexpected gift or blessing into your life?

  7. Sometimes the gifts brought by guests may not be immediately apparent or pleasant. Have you ever experienced a challenging or difficult situation where someone you extended hospitality or kindness to resulted in more hardship?

  8. The Good News in this story is that God is the ultimate host, inviting us to receive His abundant gifts. How does this perspective influence your understanding of hospitality and generosity toward others? How might it impact your willingness to offer hospitality even when you feel lacking?

  9. Brainstorm ways that YOU might be capable or able to show kindness, hospitality, or neighborliness to someone. Can you commit to blessing someone this week?

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