Posted By Nan

Genesis 12:1-8, 13:14-18, 15:1:7, 16:15-16, 17:1-22, 21:1-7
When Abraham was 75 years old, God told him to leave his country, his people and his father’s household and go to the land God would show him. Quite a big ask. God also promised He would make Abraham into a great nation.
Abraham was a righteous man, so he did as God had commanded. At 75 years old he must have expected God to give him children soon. After all, he had to be made into a great nation and that can’t happen without children.
So he travelled to Canaan and wandered around the land for many years. He still did not have any children. But God encouraged him. Again, God showed him the land that he would give to Abraham’s descendants.
Many more years passed and Abraham still had no children. God again came to him, reminding him that He was Abraham’s King. By this stage Abraham was getting a little downhearted. He asked God what God could give him when he still had no children. Without children there would be no descendants to fulfil God’s promise of Abraham becoming a great nation who would occupy the land of Canaan as their own. God repeated His promise to Abraham but this time made it more specific. Abraham would indeed give him an heir. A son coming from his own body and his descendants would be more numerous than the stars in the night sky.
And Abraham believed God.
But Sarah did not. It had been over ten years since God had first promised Abraham a nation of descendants. She grew impatient because she was his only wife and had borne him no children. She asked Abraham to have children to her maidservant so she could have children through her. That was not what God had intended.
At 99 years of age, 24 years after God’s promise. God again gave Abraham His promise of a nation of descendants through Sarah. The son she would bear would be born to her at the age of 90, long after hope of her fertility had departed. Abraham would be 100.
And God gave Abraham and Sarah a son as He had promised.
The story of Abraham and Sarah is a deeply personal story. It is the story of one man and his wife. It is the story of an impossible promise and Abraham’s wait for that promise to be fulfilled.
Abraham grew tired of waiting at times. He argued with God about the nonappearance of children but was reassured by God’s reiterated promise. He allowed his wife to talk him into forcing God’s hand by giving him a child to her maidservant. Eventually he received the son 25 years after God had promised him.
Abraham was credited as righteous and God rewarded him for his righteousness. But even he faltered sometimes in his faith. It is hard to hold on to faith when the promise takes so long. We long for an answer quickly. In hours, days, weeks. And sometimes God answers us that quickly. But more often He answers us in years. Sometimes that answer takes centuries. We cannot rush God. His answer will come at exactly the right time. Any attempt on our part to rush the answer along will lead to trouble. I am sure that every time Abraham tried to take matters into his own hands He repented and God forgave him. It is comforting to know that in our time of waiting, when our impatience causes us to doubt God or even attempt to pre-empt Him, He will still forgive us.
As we wait for the celebration of Jesus’ birth, may we not grow weary of waiting.
As we wait for God’s answers in our lives may we not grow weary of waiting. Look to the Bible. God’s answers sometimes take an incredibly long time to come, yet they always come.
May God keep you strong in Him during your time of waiting.

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