Imagine having to make a sacrifice this week. The sacrifice is unknown, yet expected to be great. This act would scare us, granted today in 2017 comfort is high and many of us have busy schedules. Rewind to Genesis 22, Abraham was called to make a sacrifice assuming God was going to provide him with a lamb for the altar, yet prepared to use his one and only son as the sacrifice.
The outcome was relieving as God did provide a ram for Abraham to sacrifice in the end, but the point of the story is that Abraham put full trust in God regardless of the weight of the sacrifice. How often do we go that far in our walk with God? Do we get to the alter? Or do we even consider going up the mountain?
Trust in God wasn’t even a question anymore for Abraham, after being 100 years old and having a child, God was sure to be evident and trust worthy of any word he claimed. Nevertheless, was man trustworthy at this point? As the story of Abraham goes, although he was promised a great offspring, this man could not come the same conclusion. Sacrificing ourselves and putting down what everything else but God says seems impossible, yet we see the success later in Abraham’s walk with God made it all worth it.
“Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth.” Genesis 11:4
Genesis 10-11 represents a new start. It represents a people who wanted to make a name for themselves, a people whose social unity and technology, gave them the confidence to think they could build a self-sufficient society for themselves – one apart from God, a people who had lost all their need for God.
“And the Lord said…Come let us go down and there confuse their language, so that they may not understand one another’s speech. So, the Lord dispersed them from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city.” Genesis 11:7-8
Isn’t it so funny that their society back then sounds a lot like ours now? God helps us get out of the flood in our own lives, and boom, we are right back to doing it our way, without God. It is so easy to forget where God has brought us from, and when we forget we deceive ourselves into believing we do not need Him anymore. We so easily find ourselves making plans for our lives as if we know tomorrow is promised, because time and time again, we think we can live this life for our own, yet time and time again, God scatters our plans to remind us to submit to His will.
In the moment, we might be confused just like the people at the Tower of Babel, but as time passes, we see His hand and magnificent purpose behind it all. You might find yourself standing in a confusing time in your life right now. Know that it is the loving hand of your creator directing you in much greater paths for your life. There is a purpose and benefit in everything the Lord does, just like at the Tower of Babel, and in the process, He will lovingly teach you to put your trust and future in Him.
The Unexpected Blessing
2 Kings 4: 8-17
“And he said, ‘At this season, about this time next year, you shall embrace a son.’ And she said, ‘No, my lord, O man of God; do not lie to your servant.’ But the woman conceived, and she bore a son about that time the following spring, as Elisha had said to her.”
One day you will see the fruit of today’s investments in the Lord. Investment in the Word will bear fruit. Investment in praying steadfastly will bear fruit. Delight in the Lord will blossom into a blessing greater than you can imagine.
“Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness. Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart” (Ps. 37:4-5).
The wealthy Shunammite woman beautifully embodies these actions. She was a woman who faithfully and joyfully served the Lord, going to great lengths to offer hospitality toward God’s prophet Elisha. Her security in the Lord shone brightly, even though she lacked one of the most essential aspects of life in the patriarchal Ancient Near East: a son.
“Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him” (Matthew 6:8).
Elisha asked the Shunammite woman what she would have in return for her service, and surprisingly asked for nothing. But God knew the desires of her heart and blessed her with exactly what she needed and wanted. Seek God, serve God, and be steadfast in fellowship with Him. He hears the most silent and most urgent prayers! Leave the choices in the hands of the Lord, and He will give you His best in such a way and time that will leave you unexpectedly speechless.