I had never heard the phrase "shuckin' and jivin'" before I met Shane. I'm not even sure where it originated. Maybe a movie? A TV show? Or maybe it was another one of those southern expressions he picked up in Texas, like "fixin' to" or "y'all." But it's a phrase we turn quite a bit around our house and it's synonymous with "messing around" or "wasting time," as in, " Hey kids, let's go! We got no time to be shuckin' and jivin'. Practice starts in ten minutes!" Yep. These days we just don't seem to have much time for shuckin' and jivin'. Or do we?
Elisha sure didn't. I haved LOVED reading about him in 2 Kings this past week. This man of God seemed to have ZERO tolerance for ANY shuckin' and jivin'. Proof?
*Elijah asks Elisha what he'd like from him before he's taken up. Elisha's response? "Let me inherit a double portion of your spirit"(2:9). That's bold. That's brassy. That's NOT shuckin' and jivin'.
*Nasty water was causing infertility and death. Elisha throws salt into it and proclaims God's declaration that it will be wholesome thereafter (2:19-22). No messin' around.
*Some hooligans taunted Elisha, giving him grief about his bald head. Let them get under his skin? No way! He cursed them in the name of the Lord, they were mauled by two bears, and the prophet continued on his way (2:23-25). He had work to do.
This extremely confident behavior continues through chapters 4 and 5, as we see Elisha offer help to a needy widow, a faithful Shunammite woman, and Naaman the leper. In every case, his word from the Lord and the directive he gives are decisive, clear, and quick. Absolutely no hint of shuckin' and jivin' whatsoever.
When it comes to living my life for God, many times I'm guilty of over-thinking. Or I'll hop on board mentally and spiritually, but my physical execution lags behind. Maybe I need to internalize that whole "not shuckin' and jivin'" concept and truly apply it. It's not a matter of being rash or acting on gut-instincts, but it IS about having that God-confidence that reaches out to help people and to attract others to the faith.
Oh to be like Elisha! To be so in tune with the Father that I don't continually seek confirmation. To have that rare combination of bold mercy that enabled him to see others' needs and get busy right away to help their situations. To not second-guess myself or my God. To be so faith-filled to know, really 100% know, that as the prayer or claim leaves my mouth, it's as good as done. Wow.
Come on y'all...ain't no time to be shuckin' and jivin'!