Then Elijah said to him, “Stay here; the LORD has sent me to the Jordan.” And he replied, “As surely as the LORD lives and as you live, I will not leave you.” So the two of them walked on.
Fifty men of the company of the prophets went and stood at a distance, facing the place where Elijah and Elisha had stopped at the Jordan. Elijah took his cloak, rolled it up and struck the water with it. The water divided to the right and to the left, and the two of them crossed over on dry ground. 2 Kings 2:6-8
Buried in the story of Elijah passing the mantle over to Elisha is this snippet at the end of verse six: “So the two of them walked on.” This sentence is just exploding with possibilities. Elijah and Elisha were walking to the Jordan, Elijah rolled up his cloak, struck the water and it parted. Then what the text say, “and the two of them crossed over on dry ground.”
To begin with, I don’t recall this story in the Bible. It was no small miracle that the Jordan river parted so that Elijah and Elijah parted on dry ground. Sound like another familiar story about Moses? But the point I want to emphasize is this: Elijah and Elisha walked to the Jordan, then in the dry river bed. I would have loved to been a fly on their shoulder listening in to their conversations. Child psychologists call this a “teachable moment.” I can almost see Elisha walking backwards but face to face with Elijah, chattering non stop, as someone excited might do. Even the parting of the Jordan River would have brought a ton of chatter and questions and enthusiasm and energy.
Each of us have these kinds of moments throughout our day, though probably not as momentous as this occasion. We have opportunities, but do we fully utilize them? Next time someone younger and more inexperienced is picking your brain for information and tips, don’t think of it as a time waster. Instead, think of it as an opportunity you may never get again to train the eager, to mold them if only for a few minutes. Encourage that person in every way possible.