Abraham is widely respected as being the “father of the faith.” And why not? God told him to go, and he went. God promised that HE would father a great nation, and he believed that it would be so — even though he and Sarah were already middle aged (or downright OLD).
(For the sake of clarity, I will refer to them as Abraham and Sarah, rather than changing their names back and forth. #JustSoWe’reClear)
Repeatedly in Genesis chapters 12 – 20 God is reaffirming his call on Abraham. When Abraham questions, God calmly reminds him of the promise, and that it would indeed come to pass. And Abraham had a long time to wrestle with the waiting.
Are you in a period of waiting? We are! We have moved to this new land, far from our families. We are trusting that when it is time to move and start doing the work he brought us here for, that He will let us know. It’s been just over 5 months. Abraham waited decades for the promised Isaac to arrive. (Five months doesn’t seem all that long when put into perspective.)
But let’s talk about faith. And trust. As I was reading about our friend Abraham, I was just in awe of his absolute faith and trust in God. He packed up his entire life and went out into a complete unknown!! His faith that God would accomplish what He had promised was strong and sure.
Until they approached a new country, and he was not familiar with the King. All of a sudden, God must have seemed far away. Because instead of clinging to the same faith that allowed him to leave his home for the wilderness, he fell apart! Fearing for his life, he asked Sarah to pretend to be his sister rather than his wife. (Later we see that he wasn’t “technically” lying.)
As I read that part of the story, I stopped cold. It hit me forcefully that I do the same thing. We had the faith to leave our families and comfort zones behind. We packed everything up to follow God and this crazy songwriting/ministry dream. But at the first sign of hardship, trouble, financial stress, or discomfort — I flew into a panic. There were tears — many of them — as I wondered where my youngest would go to school, since the naive country girl didn’t realize that having a waiting list 3 times as long as the one pre-K class available is a normal thing. When we finally found a school with an opening, we cried and wrung our hands wondering how on earth my husband would get both children to different parts of the city on time. We solved that issue by having my oldest son come to school with me. But — when my hours were different than I had originally been told, all of a sudden our “kid drop-off” plan wasn’t going to work! And all the while, God must have been just waiting for me to remember that He loves my children even more than I do, and that He ALWAYS has their best in mind.
After a couple of days the situation resolved itself in the exact way that I hoped for, but didn’t think was possible. But — I had to wait in order for all of the puzzle pieces to fall into place. I had to start my new job, become friends with a woman who has become like a sister to me, and through that friendship, I learned that the special education preschool program at my school accepted “peer model” students. I talked with the teacher, and my principal. My principal talk with the district coordinators. Jonathan was accepted into the preschool program at my school. Both of my boys attend the same school as me — which is what my heart desperately wanted, but didn’t believe was possible!
The saying “God’s provision is never early, but is always ON TIME” is so true, and we have seen it proven over and over agin . . . usually followed by a few days of panic. We are learning, though, to trust first, pray second (and third and continuously), and then just relax. While we are relaxing we are continuing on in the last things He gave us to do. Serving in our church. Working diligently at our jobs.
Waiting is hard. I take immense comfort in knowing that God doesn’t mind reminding us of the promises He has spoken.
And that even if we freak out in the middle and pretend that we aren’t married, like Abraham did — or freak out and act like our children are going to be abandoned in a big city, like I did — God still has our backs. Thank goodness. 🙂
What transition are you in right now? How can I pray for you in your time of waiting?