The Blessing of Emptiness
2 Kings 4:1 – “Now there cried a certain woman of the wives of the sons of the prophets unto Elisha, saying, Thy servant my husband is dead; and thou knowest that thy servant did fear the Lord: and the creditor is come to take unto him my two sons to be bondmen.”
This poor woman’s husband had died leaving her and her sons with debt. The creditors were going to take her sons until the debt was paid off. So, she went to the prophet Elisha.
2 Kings 4:2 – “And Elisha said unto her, What shall I do for thee? tell me, what hast thou in the house? And she said, Thine handmaid hath not any thing in the house, save a pot of oil.”
He asked that because he was concerned about what she still had. What do you have that God can use?
2 King 4:3-4 – “Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbours, even empty vessels; borrow not a few. 4 And when thou art come in, thou shalt shut the door upon thee and upon thy sons, and shalt pour out into all those vessels, and thou shalt set aside that which is full.”
However much you bring, that’s how much God will fill. God would do something with emptiness.
2 King 4:5-7 – “So she went from him, and shut the door upon her and upon her sons, who brought the vessels to her; and she poured out. 6 And it came to pass, when the vessels were full, that she said unto her son, Bring me yet a vessel. And he said unto her, There is not a vessel more. And the oil stayed. 7 Then she came and told the man of God. And he said, Go, sell the oil, and pay thy debt, and live thou and thy children of the rest.”
Hunger has the ability to predetermine how much of God you will receive. When your spirit longs for God, the Bible calls it ‘hunger.’ When there is much seeking, there is much finding of the answers. You don’t stumble accidentally on Spiritual provision. Somebody or someone else was seeking the Lord when provision comes.
Emptiness brings provision. Confession of the need brings God. You haven’t sought God, He came after you. God is seeking a vessel in which He can show Himself strong and mighty.
God uses vessels. Who is the vessel that God will use the most? It is the one that is emptiest of self. He will pour Himself into the one who is empty. You can empty yourself through repentance or a deep need. This keeps us motivated in seeking and serving God. It’s the need that motivates us to seek Him.
Isa 57:15 – “For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.”
God hangs out with humble things. He hangs out with the lowly, the contrite. He revives the heart of the contrite one.
God’s instruction to this woman was ‘Bring me all the emptiness you can find and I will fill it all.’ The amount of lack will determine your filling.
God can heal everything. If you want to see God’s greatness, show yourself empty.
Psalm 34:18 – “The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.”
This woman had nothing left but her children sold into slavery and a little bit of oil. That oil symbolized the Holy Ghost. God used it to fill the emptiness.
Your problem is your diet spiritually. The lack of hunger is your problem. Spiritual junk food will keep you from being hungry for more of God. Empty yourself.
Jesus didn’t come for the healthy or the righteous. He came for the sick, for those that need Him. People who don’t think they need Him can continue to think they don’t need Him alone.
Jesus is there in need. You will not be filled until you are emptied of the stuff that needs to go. You’ve got to be a clean and empty vessel.
God is no different from a good mother or father and looks for a clean and empty bottle to feed those babies.
There is a blessing in the lack. Even though you feel lack, God is coming to you ready to pick you up and fill you up with provision. Greater things are on the way if you’re an empty vessel.
Mat 5:6 – “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.”
Blessing occurs when the eternal infiltrates time, when heaven comes to earth. It’s not natural, it’s supernatural. In order to be filled with God, you’ve got to be empty of the things of the world.
What is the one thing you need to be filled with God’s Spirit? You need to be empty. You need to repent and get everything that’s in there out. You’ve got to be empty in order to have the flow of the Holy Ghost. If you’re empty, there is blessing coming.
What is in your house that you can pour into an empty vessel? If you don’t have enough empty vessels, go get some more. Seek out your lack. The world doesn’t offer the same joy Jesus does, the same peace that Jesus does, the same love that Jesus does. This is your lack.
Satisfaction is the greatest enemy of the purpose of God. Some ideas are good ideas, but not God-ideas.
Jesus told Peter that He needed to go to Jerusalem, but Peter didn’t want Him to go. Jesus called him Satan.
The reason you’ve got less of Jesus is that you’ve got too much of you. How do you make God bigger? He’s already great. Space looks bigger to the one who is smaller. You must empty yourself so God can fill you up.
John 3:30 – “He must increase, but I must decrease.”
Why are you so depressed? It’s because there is something that’s got to go. Maybe that friend or habit is hindering the move of God. They can’t break that sinful habit. Why? There’s too much of them.
There is power available if you will empty yourself. God will totally change you if you empty yourself. It’s not about having it all together, it’s about being honest about your need.
God uses vessels that are available, not just extraordinary. When the doorbell rings and the pizza man comes, and he’s got what you’ve ordered, but there’s no box. No, thank-you. You don’t want coffee without a cup. When you get a steak at a restaurant, you’re not interested in the plate, you’re interested in the steak.
If there’s going to be a miracle, there must be an empty vessel.
There needs to be a clean fork in order to eat the food, a clean plate to deliver the steak, a clean box to deliver the pizza.
Is the value in the vessel or what the vessel contained? The vessel is only valuable because of what it contains. Your body is a vessel. Your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost. You are not even your own. You are the body of Christ.
Jesus’ body, that vessel, was beaten and poked until it died. He didn’t say, ‘I am finished.’ He said, ‘It is finished.’ Jesus borrowed the tomb, but He bought you!
The value is determined by what is in the vessel. God is looking for a vessel to show Himself strong and mighty. God wants a vessel with nothing else in it.
‘They that hunger and thirst for righteousness shall be filled.’
Psalm 107:9 – “For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness.”
2 Chron 7:14 – “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
Become empty and available to God.
Acts 3:19 – “Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.”
The reason why you haven’t experienced refreshing is that you’ve not repented. If you need oil, bring God a vessel.
David said, ‘Lord, fill my cup.’
See your situation differently. Recognize the fact that your lack, your mess, your situation, is not greater than God and get empty. He will fill.
When God created the world, He spoke it into existence. When God spoke, Jupiter was created. On Jupiter, there’s a big, red dot. It’s bigger than the earth. It’s a storm that has been going for at least 200 years. God spoke the stars into space. He spoke them. The worlds were framed by the Word of God. What has created us is not something we can see. People are the only creation that was not made with the Word. God made a vessel out of clay, out of the earth. He took something that He’d already spoke. Instead of making us with His voice, He made us with His hands. We’re different than the animals, the trees, and the earth. That is why you are natural. Part of you was also made by the breath of God. Part of you that is natural contains five senses, like lab assistants that help you understand and communicate with the world around you. These help you contact natural things. When you hear God, you don’t hear Him with the same ears that are either side of your head.
You have to be outside of the natural through faith. God did something wonderful, He took His energy, Spirit, and power and put it into words. He packaged it in such a way that these words can be united with faith, you can connect with Him. The Words that are read leap out into your spirit and bring life. You’ve got to be born of the Word. You are born again by the Word of God.
John 6:63 – “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”
The importance of being a vessel and being clean is how healing flows and miracles happen. Your body is worth about as much to God as a box for the pizza. For the guy that needs the pizza, let that box be good and firm and clean. There’s value. You have got to be an empty and clean vessel before miracles can happen in the House of God.
Maybe your reasoning is faulty and not right. The wisdom from heaven is pure. An enemy of the oil is education.
God is looking for empty people. He isn’t looking for smart or stupid people. Don’t listen to the enemy’s lies to the point that God’s Word can’t get in. Empty yourself of those lies, that you’re stupid or not good enough. Empty yourself of that. God values the vessel that’s empty to the point that He puts the most important thing in the world inside—the Holy Ghost.
Excerpted from a sermon preached by Pastor Anthony LoCascio.
For the full YouTube audio/video, click here.
If you are looking for an Apostolic Pentecostal church and are in the Chicagoland area, come check out The Life Church located at 3030 Central Road in Glenview, IL. Services are Sundays at 1pm and Wednesdays at 7pm. We would love to see you there!