Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Life Lessons from Biblical Characters | Abram and Sarai

Genesis 16: 1 Now Sarai, Abram's wife bare him no children: and she had an handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar.

This one verse holds at least two lessons, possibly three.  For the sake of time I will only look into one today and the others in the weeks ahead. 

In the entire chapter before (Genesis 15), we saw the ceremony that God initiated between him and Abram as He promised to make Abram the father of a great people/nation. Abram was told to look at the stars and number them because that was how many descendants he would have.  Not only was he promised descendants too many to count, but an enormous plot of land "from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates" for his descendants to live (it had to be big for all of the descendants living there).

It is usually right after we receive a great promise of God in our lives that the reality of what we can see in the natural hits us, and we can always see a back up plan of our own devising. Sometimes, it is someone close to us who feels the pressure of reality (not faith) and sees a human solution (not the Divine solution) and wants to rectify a situation in their own strength (rather than waiting on and following through with God's plan).

That is where faith comes in.

We need to have faith that God has spoken to us (He spoke to Abram not Sarai), that He is true to His Word, and that His solution will work it's way on our behalf. 

I'm sure after Abram told Sarai about the vision that he had had, she looked forward to seeing if at her time of the month there was a happy surprise.  And with each month that passed, her first instinct was to figure out a way to make God's plan move a little faster.  Notice that it isn't Abram that is directly mentioned in this verse, but Sarai.

Sometimes, when we share something that God has showed us with others that may not have the same level of faith that we have, they try to help God along in our lives (pushing their opinions and ideas and trying to take the wheel).  We should never be afraid to share (that is how God sometimes chooses to build faith in others), but we must stay firm in our faith that God will work out our circumstances, and if He chooses to use others, then He will show us very clearly.

Hold on to the promises.  Hold on tightly, and don't let go!

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