Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Fully Surrendered

Scripture Texts: Genesis 21:1-7; Romans 9:6-9; Hebrews 11:11-16

Sarah laughed when she heard God's plan for her to be pregnant and give birth to a son with Abraham. The circumstances were all wrong by human standards. She was not able to have children, and even if she could she was well passed childbearing years. Abraham was no spring chicken either at nearly 100 years old. Yet just like God had promised Isaac was born to them. The son was given when they had resigned themselves to something different because they only saw human limitation.

Interestingly enough the way history reports Abraham and Sarah is to remember their great faith. Both in the book of Romans and in the book of Hebrews we hear how the birth of Isaac was a testament to their faith. Perhaps it is possible the greatest faith we see is not from Abraham and Sarah but from God who continued with the promise even though Sarah laughed. God was not deterred by the fact that Abraham and Sarah had decided their lives were not going to include a child of their own.

It was late fall of 1997 and we had been exchanging hand written letters. I, Aaron, was working at a camp and retreat center and Sarah was home working on the family dairy farm. About once a week we would exchange letters talking about life and complaining about the lack of qualified people to date or consider for marriage. As we were sharing the letters I had determined that if God wanted me to that I would live my life as a single person, and was truly okay with that. I had always felt God had someone in mind for me to marry but I was sure that was not a reality that I would experience. So much so that I was ready to sell all my earthly possessions with the exception of my backpack, sleeping bag and a few other camping related items, and head for Colorado to camp and live off the land in the summer and be a ski instructor in the winter. I had resigned myself to something other than marriage.

Well God had another plan. The letters between us became more regular, every couple of days, and it seemed what we were describing as our hopeful mate was each other. So with what felt like great risk we decided to chance the great friendship we had and explore dating. The rest of the story is as they say history.

In our journey from friends writing letters to married couple we have experienced the fulfillment of God's promise. When we were resigned to a life different than we thought possible is exactly when God brought the promise to reality. It is almost as if God was waiting until we were fully surrendered before the promise was brought to fruition.

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