“Wait patiently for the LORD. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the LORD.” – Psalm 27:14, NLT
Waiting is difficult for me. I want answers and results right away. However, my goal is to become more like Abraham, who trusted in God’s timing.
The Lord told Abraham he would be the father of many nations and the number of his offspring would be like the stars in the sky (Genesis 15:5). The prediction seemed like a joke, a very cruel joke, considering Abraham and Sarah were childless. Plus, they were old. Much too old to have children.
Yet, the Bible tells us that Abraham and Sarah did experience the joy of parenthood 25 years after the promise had been given. Hebrews 6:15 says, “And so after waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised.” That’s a quarter of a century of waiting!
How did Abraham do it? How did he demonstrate great faith rather great frustration during the delay? Romans 4:18-21 gives us some insight:
“Even when there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping—believing that he would become the father of many nations. For God had said to him, “That’s how many descendants you will have!” And Abraham’s faith did not weaken, even though, at about 100 years of age, he figured his body was as good as dead—and so was Sarah’s womb. Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises.”
Following are seven principles we can glean and apply to our own lives from this passage:
1. Against all hope, Abraham believed.
2. He didn’t weaken in his faith.
3. He saw beyond the facts and trusted God for the impossible.
4. He didn’t waver through unbelief.
5. His faith grew stronger the longer he waited.
6. He brought glory to God.
7. He was fully persuaded God had power to do what He said.
If you are familiar with this story at all, you’re probably thinking, Hold on a minute. What about the thing with Hagar?! (See Genesis 16.) Yes, Abraham did experience brief periods of doubt. After all, he wasn’t perfect. Certainly, he struggled at times and questioned God, just like we do. However, he refused to allow poor decisions or minor setbacks derail his faith. Instead, he continued to look to the Lord, expecting the promise to be fulfilled.
If you and I want to imitate the strong faith of this forefather, then we need to put our trust in THE Father. We, too, must be fully convinced God is true to his Word. Even when things don’t seem to be lining up according to how we think they should go, we must trust that God knows what he’s doing.
Your current situation may seem hopeless, but you must choose to believe God’s Word. Know that the Lord is faithful, and not one of his promises has ever failed to come to pass. Not one. Not ever. Not his promise to Abraham. Not his promises to you.