Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Do things seem hopeless?

When circumstances appear hopeless, God keeps his promises.

 Abram (Abraham) was 75 years old when God told him to “leave his country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land I will show you (Gen 12: 1).” God continued to tell Abraham that He would make him a great nation from his family. Abram obeyed God and left the comforts of his homeland for an unknown destination.

I wonder if the words “I will make a great nation from your family” mulled around in the back of his head as he headed out. You see at the time, Abraham had no biological children as his wife Sarai (Sarah) was barren. Yet he stepped out in faith and didn’t question God.

Fast forward a few years. I wonder if Abraham assumes God will fulfill His promise of making a great nation from his family through his slave Eliezer because he and Sarah are still childless. This story is told in Genesis 15: 1-6 where the Lord appears to Abraham in a vision:

“Abram, don’t be afraid. I will defend you, and I will give you a great reward.” But Abram said, “Lord God, what can you give me? I have no son, so my slave Eliezer from Damascus will get everything I own after I die.” Abram said, “Look, you have given me no son, so a slave born in my house will inherit everything I have.” Then the Lord spoke his word to Abram: “He will not be the one to inherit what you have. You will have a son of your own who will inherit what you have.” Then God led Abram outside and said, “Look at the sky. There are so many stars you cannot count them. Your descendants also will be too many to count.” Abram believed the Lord. And the Lord accepted Abram’s faith, and that faith made him right with God. [emphasis mine]

God promises Abraham descendants too many to count but the circumstances haven’t changed a bit…Abraham and Sarah are still advanced in years and childless. Perhaps a few more years pass, I don’t know the Bible doesn’t tell us…but Sarah decides to take matters into her own hands and gives her slave girl, Hagar, to Abraham (Genesis 16:1-3). Although this was customary in their day it still showed a lack of faith in God to do what He promised He would do.

Have you ever taken matters into your own hands and gotten ahead of God? You take a look at the circumstances that surround you and think “maybe I should step in do…something.” I sure have and by taking action in my own strength and timing shows a complete lack of faith and willingness to allow God to work…in His.

God always keeps his promises…it may take a lot longer than we would like, but He is faithful.

Lamentations 3:21 – 26 (GW)
“The reason I can still find hope is that I keep this one thing in mind: the Lord’s mercy. We were not completely wiped out. His compassion is never limited. It is new every morning. His faithfulness is great. My soul can say, ‘The Lord is my lot in life. That is why I find hope in him.’ The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to anyone who seeks help from him. “It is good to continue to hope and wait silently for the Lord to save us.”

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