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When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, “Tell me, what can I do for you before I am taken from you?” “Let me inherit a double portion of your spirit,” Elisha replied. “You have asked a difficult thing,” Elijah said, “yet if you see me when I am taken from you, it will be yours–otherwise not.” 2 Kings 2:9-10

The Old Testament prophet Elisha had watched his teacher, Elijah, perform many miracles. Now it was time for Elijah to be taken up into heaven. Three times Elijah told his student to stay behind as he continued his journey. Three times Elisha refused to listen.

Finally, Elijah asked Elisha what he wanted to have as a gift before Elijah was taken up into heaven. Imagine that! Elisha knew the power that Elijah had. He could have asked for anything, but Elisha didn’t ask for power, honor, prestige or any other earthly thing. He asked for a double portion of Elijah’s spirit.

The word ‘spirit’ refers to that inner passion to know God and follow Him more closely. Of all the things he could have asked for Elisha wanted to feel the passion for God, the faith and the wisdom that he’d seen in his master. He wanted to be used of God in even mightier ways than Elijah, but for God’s glory not his. What a bold statement. Elisha wasn’t afraid to ask God for the best!

There is a lesson to be learned by Elisha’s courage. He knew that once the inner quality of life was established the external results would follow. He was persistent in pursing the best God had to give him. External results don’t necessarily mean fame and fortune but it does mean seeing our lives and the lives of others changed for eternity.

None of us should ever be afraid to ask God to give us His absolute best! As Christ followers don’t be afraid to ask God to do mighty things in your life. As His child, He wants you to be all you can be. We tend to measure our ‘success’ or ‘abilities’ by things that others can see, but God looks on the heart.

PRAYER: Father God, I ask that you would help me to have the courage to seek your absolute best in my life. Help me to see myself as you see me, to put aside my own feelings of inadequacy and to forgive myself and others so that you can use me however you see fit. Amen.

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January 2010
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