Genesis 16: 1– 18: 15 Matthew 6: 1-24 Psalm 7: 1-17 Proverbs 2: 1-5
Today I read about Ishmael and the coming of Isaac. Ishmael and Isaac are both from the same father, Abram and then Abraham, but of two mothers, Hagar and Sarai, or Sarah later. This appears to be the classic case of doubting God, I mean Abram was ninety-nine years old and Sarai ninety. If God told you that your ninety-year-old grandma would have a child would you laugh? Or would you? In our piety, we say we would take God at his word but is that our natural inclination? In Genesis 18:14, ” Is anything too hard for the LORD?” And of course, the answer is no. So why then do we laugh at things that take outrageous faith?
Later in our readings today we get the Lord’s Prayer. The prayer, “Jesus taught His disciples to pray.” Take a look at it:
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, 10 your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us today our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.
So it is easy to criticize Sarai, many do, for a lack of faith in God’s ability to do the undoable. If you doubt it look at verse ten, “your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Jesus taught his disciples, the boys walking around with Him, the Lord of Lords and the King of Kings and they needed to be reminded to ask God to His will here like it is in heaven. And there lies a big point. We don’t do things on earth the way it is done in heaven, not by a long shot. We serve ourselves. Governments serve themselves, parents serve themselves, children serve themselves, even churches serve themselves.
So is it any wonder that when God told Abram that his wife was going to have a miracle here on earth, she didn’t believe? Heck, having a baby at ninety is nothing for God. I often do the same thing, I make a mountain out of a molehill. I mean, is what I am facing a big deal to God?
This past summer we took a trip to Yellowstone and the Black Hills, beautiful. To get to Mount Rushmore and the Black Hills from Yellowstone we had to cross the Bighorn Mountains. These are steep mountains! I was pulling a 10,000-pound trailer behind my truck my daughter named “Betsy”, a Ford F-250. It was slow going, but we made it fine. Just like Sarai, slow going, but she eventually made it. It was no big deal because we did as the signs instructed, low gear and take it slow. Big mountains, but no big deal.
To be sure, there are some big things we face on this earth: sickness, divorce, loss, death very large mountains. But even these God has overcome. These are huge mountains, but I pray that I would have a faith that was big enough to not laugh, but rather to say, “it will be done here as God does it there.” Just take it slow and follow the signs.
Until next time, peace.
Tyndale. The One Year Bible NIV (OYB: Full Size) (Kindle Locations 1108-1110). Tyndale House Publishers. Kindle Edition.