But God replied, “No-Sarah, your wife, will give birth to a son for you. Gen. 17:19
Genesis 16 relays a problem that is dealt with in various ways. To back it up a bit, Abraham was given a super charged promise from God yet no one was seeing evidence of it becoming reality. So Sarah, Abraham’s wife decides she better just handle this for God.
Ever been there? … Don’t worry God I know you got a lot on Your plate right now so I’ll just take this one thing and handle it for You. (If you have never been there great! However I can vouch that 100+/100+ times it’s never worked out well for me when I’ve taken this approach to problems! Note to self: STOP trying this method!!!)
Secondly I see in Genesis 16 that Abraham rather than stand in faithful trust on God’s timing and way he participates in Sarah’s wayward plan but than takes the hands off approach in trying to fix it! Maybe he figures if he ignores it long enough it will fix itself?! (Personally ignoring the problem is like ignoring a stone in your shoe it doesn’t go away it creates massive blisters that can get infected and cause gang green which leads to amputation and… well you get the gruesome picture right!? Bottom line: don’t ignore problems…or participate in creating them!)
Thirdly I see a third party get roped into the problem. Ecc. 4:12 says a cord of three strands is not easily broken, so if the third party to your problem is not God than you are just going to end up with a bigger problem!
Hagar our third party handles the problem by running away. In Gen. 16:8 God meets her in flight and asks her where she is going. Now God only asks us questions to get US to figure out something (He already knows the answer folks). In Hagar’s attempt to run she finds she can’t run from God (and neither can we). What does God tell her to name the baby inside her that seems to be causing such an issue… Ishmael which means God hears!!! Dear one, God hears what’s on your heart too! You may want to run but He’s there to embrace you if you’ll run to Him and like Hagar we will find that He is El Roi. God not only hears but sees you!
You are more deeply loved than you could ever even fathom – yes YOU.
Now jumping forward to Genesis 17 we see that in spite of all the tangled messes we weave God is still able! Amen! Abraham in verse 17 bows down to the ground before God but laughs because he just can’t fathom how God is ever going to be able to handle this… Abraham basically rationalizes with God and says, God great idea but really that is impossible, it will never work! Do you see me, do you see my wife, we could never do or be who You are wanting… let me give You a suggestion God, why don’t You just…
Ever been there? …God there is just no way. Either You need another plan or You need another person, cuz there is just no way! And if You need a few suggestions I have some God so ah.. just let me know. (Note to self: God is into blowing our minds with the unexpectedly impossible and He doesn’t loose battles so to start one with Him never ends well for me.) So in verse 19 God simply tells Abraham, no. We are doing it My way Ab… for your own good.
And that is just it, it IS for our own good (Rom. 8:28)! God is good all the time. All the time God is good and yes that takes walking by faith and not sight (2 Cor. 5:7) and keeping a heavenly mindset because this life on earth is just a vapor our reality is in heaven and that is to be our focus (James 4:14, Col. 3:1-2, 2 Tim. 4:18).
So today Lord, help me to think bigger because You are bigger, bigger than any waves in life that would pose a threatening problem. The waves may look big but they are still under Your feet so help me to walk out there on them with You because You are bigger. Praise the mighty victorious name of Jesus!
Independent Read: Eph. 3:20-21, Matt. 19:26