Today's Manna

January 10, 2017
Wait on the Lord
by Lois McBride
Scripture Reading: Genesis 16-17

Abram and Sarah had long waited for God to fulfill His promise to them of an heir. In the Hebrew culture, it was a reproach and a dishonor to not only be barren, but to remain barren. The Scriptures teach that “Children are a heritage from the LORD" (Ps 127:3). Hannah, many years later, would also feel the sting of condescension, pity, and reproach for being barren. For Hannah, it drove her to fall on her face before the LORD and then wait for His perfect gift in His perfect time.

Sarah, though, felt her time had run out. She understood God’s promise of an heir but, in her mind, it was time to speed up the process because neither her nor Abram were getting any younger. After 10 years of waiting, Sarah took matters in her own hands and offered her servant, Hagar, to Abram as a means of helping God along. Abram had already been straightened out by God about through whom the promised heir should come, but Sarah's reasoning trumped God's Word.

There is no way Sarah could have predicted the consequences of taking matters into her own hands. The rivalry that developed between the “son of nature” and the “son of promise” is still being bitterly played out on the world’s stage today by their heirs, not only in the Middle East, but in literally every nation on earth. So great a matter doth a little fire kindle.

It’s hard to believe in God’s perfect love and care when we cannot see any activity on His part. It’s hard to patiently pass the days of crushing financial, family, or health problems without trying to engineer an end to the struggles. It’s easy to start with faith, but to endure with faith is hard. Sarah's impatience led her to reason that God intended to use the accepted custom of the day to provide a son for them. Are we not caught in the same trap to "help" God on occasion when He moves too slowly?

In Proverbs 3:5 we read, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding." God fulfilled His promise to Abram and Sarah 13 years later in the person of their son Isaac. God always keeps His promises. He's never late. His gifts are always perfect. When we wait on God's perfect gifts He receives honor and glory and we receive His best.

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