“You said I could only have one cookie! Now you are giving me two. That’s not what you said.” My oldest son complained last night to my husband. Yes, complained because we gave him two cookies instead of two!? His tone suggested he was upset with us. We were a little annoyed. Even though two cookies are better than one, it wasn’t what we had said. He wasn’t complaining as much as commenting on our character. We didn’t live up to what we had promised.
Do you know someone who always has to point out inconsistencies in what you say? Someone who examines each sentence. Someone who analyzes every detail. I’m not allowed to change my mind without an explanation. My motives are questioned. My actions criticized. Every decision is seen as a promise. So, if I backtrack on a choice, it means I’ve broken a promise.
Believe me when I say this: I’ve broken a lot of promises. In a way, Jack does have the right to question when I say we will do something. Circumstances are unpredictable. I’ve had to say no after saying yes. It hurts. I don’t like to break promises, but sometimes it happens. Life happens. Just saying we are going to do something isn’t a promise, though.
I think I view God’s Word in a similar way sometimes. I question God’s will when circumstances don’t align to what I had pictured. I question His decision when I am suffering. When it comes to what God says He is going to do, I believe it. But in the darkest nights I wonder if He really means it when He says….
I will never you.
I will strengthen you.
I will go before you.
I am in control.
Faith sees God’s promises as truth, not possibilities.
Sarah was a woman of faith because she believed God’s promises. She believed and lived her life in truth. We can have the faith of Sarah when we believe God’s promises. Hebrews 10:23: “Let us hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” We can hold on to our faith, because God is faithful!
By faith even Sarah herself, when she was unable to have children, received power to conceive offspring, even though she was past the age, since she considered that the One who had promised was faithful. Hebrews 11:11
She considered the One who had promised faithful. God was faithful. Her faith in God’s character built the foundation for Sarah’s faith. She believed God would do what He said He was going to do. And know what? HE DID! He gave her a son. God can be trusted because He has always (and will always) fulfill His promises.
Sarah’s faith was rooted in God’s promises.
Her faith in God’s promises is inspiring! Are you suffering? God promises to comfort. Are you struggling to make ends meet financially? God always provides. Wondering if God hears? He does. He will answer. Dealing with guilt from past sin? God is faithful to forgive.
Although Sarah’s faith is inspiring, let’s not miss one teeny, tiny point: She waited 25 years for God to fulfill His promise. WHOA. Twenty-five years. She waited for 25 years for God to give her a son. Sarah wasn’t a perfect woman. She made plenty of mistakes. Remember her handmaiden Hagar (Genesis 16)? Yeah, not her shining moment of faith. But you know what? Hagar isn’t mentioned in Hebrews 11. Sarah’s faith is mentioned. In fact, Romans 4:20-22 is speaking about both Abraham and Sarah:
No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness.” Romans 4:20-22
Sarah’s waiting produced in her, not a lack of faith, but a strengthening of faith. Sarah grew strong in her faith during the empty years. Sarah’s faith not only took root in God’s promises, but as she and Abraham gave God glory, they become “fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.” Fully convinced.
Faith is being fully convinced in the promises of God. Sarah was certain. Sure. Maybe not everyday. Maybe not in every circumstances. Maybe she cried. Maybe she wondered. Yet, I picture her praising God still. Through the tears she gave God glory. During the lonely moments and months, she lifted her eyes to heaven and praised. She glorified the One who hung the stars.
Sarah’s faith grew as she praised the One making the promise.
I Kings 8:56 – “Blessed the LORD who has given rest to his people Israel, according to all that he promised. Not one word has failed of all his good promise, which he spoke by Moses his servant.”
What promises do you need to claim today? What promises do you find your heart thinking they are just possibilities?
Believe His Words are true!
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