March 6, 2012

Trusting in God

We did a Bible study at our church that outlined the timeline of the Bible, and we covered many, many different stories and events.  I have heard the story of God's covenant with Abram several times before, but I learned something very new and intriguing about it during our study.

"Sometime after these events, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: 'Fear not, Abram! I am your shield; I will make your reward very great.'  But Abram said, 'O Lord God, what good will your gifts be, if I keep on being childless and have as my heir the steward of my house, Eliezer?' Abram continued, 'See, you have given me no offspring, and so one of my servants will be my heir.' Then the Lord came to him.  'No, that one shall not be your heir; your own issues shall be your heir.'  He took him outside and said 'Look up at the sky and count the stars, if you can.  Just so,' he added, 'shall your descendants be.' Abram put his faith in the Lord, who credited it to an act of righteousness."
- Genesis 15:1-6

When I heard this story in the past, I always imagined God taking Abram outside to a beautiful, clear, starry night.  However, later on in the passage we hear about it getting dark: "As the sun was about to set, a trance fell on Abram, and a deep, terrifying darkness enveloped him" (Genesis 15:12). God took Abram outside in broad daylight and told him his descendants would be as numerous as the stars out there.

I loved hearing about this part of the story because I feel like it sends a powerful message telling us to trust in God at all times, and it makes Abram's willingness to put his faith in God even more admirable.  This also shows what we have to do all the time in life: trust in God's plans and goodness even when we cannot see him and we do not know what the future holds. He did indeed later have a son with his wife, showing that God's timing might not be our timing, but his timing is always perfect. 

Later on in his life, Abraham (name changed by God) shows what I think is the ultimate trust in God when God asks him to kill his son Isaac.  Obviously, he did not have to because he proved his trust to God when he willingly went through the steps before doing it.

Abraham's actions and faithfulness send me strong message to trust in God, as Abraham was able to put his total trust in God with the struggles of not being able to have a child and then being asked to kill his only child.  I am blessed to not have any big or comparable trials in my life like this, so why is it so hard sometimes to trust that God knows best and he has the ultimate, best plan for my life?  I hope Abraham can serve as a model in trusting in the Lord wholeheartedly. 

"My soul, be at rest in God alone,
from whom comes my hope.
God alone is my rock and my salvation,
my secure height: I shall not fail.
My safety and glory are with God,
my strong rock and refuge.
Trust God at all times, my people!
Pour out your hearts to God our refuge!"
- Psalm 62: 6-9


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