Tested? Saddle up the Donkey
Genesis 22 : 1-18 NIV
Read this scripture and imagine the people involved. How would each of the people involved felt as they witnessed this journey? What would they have seen? What spiritual lesson would each of them have learned: Abraham? Sarah? Isaac? The Servants? God?
Can you imagine being in Abraham’s sandals? He was gifted a child even while he and his wife were in their 90’s. Abraham and Sarah are blessed with joy and laughter because of God’s timing...but their world is now turned upside down through this request, from God, to sacrifice this precious boy. Talk about a trial and test from God! What would you have done? What would you do if God called you to the ultimate sacrifice? Would your faith hold up? Would your obedience hold up? Abraham knew, with clarity, what he was supposed to do....so, what things held his faith through this trial?
The amazing part about this story is that Abraham answers God with, “Here I am” and then responds the next day “He got up early the next day and saddled his donkey”. When God calls you to something difficult do you say, “Sure thing, Lord! I will leave first thing in the morning and get on that ASAP!” How do you answer Him? Were you quick to saddle up your donkey and hit the trail?
As a follower of Jesus we think of all of the sacrifices made in obedience. We think of those Christians murdered on the beach this year by ISIS and we think, “I may never know that level of persecution and I may never be pressed to show that level of faith...but if I lived for Christ in the most faithful way, what would I look like? How would I appear to my friends and family? How can I be Christ in the skin and soul that I have been given?”
We know there is a cost to following Jesus.. But what is the reward?
To know that we are doing what is right is a great reward. The satisfaction of obedience is like a strong wind in your sails! We have the great reward of knowing that God will one day say to us, “well done, good and faithful servant.” Can you imagine the way you might feel when Jesus approves of your faithfulness to Him and His name? Also, let us identify the reward of the many blessings of God (Maybe both spiritual and physical) being poured on you through your obedience! And lastly, the greatest reward is God himself! With Him forever. Surrounded by a vast love that carries us and protects us. God will forever fill that spiritual hole in our heart!
Abraham answered God in obedience because he loved God. He trusted God’s plan. He trusted God while not understanding the details. His faith was strong because he wanted to live as he was created to do! And the beauty of the story is that while Abraham was obedient on Mt Moriah, God sent his only Son, Jesus, to die on a cross to pay the penalty of sin for all who would accept him as the Redeemer of the world. It was on the same location that God did not withhold His son (2 Chronicles 3:1)! Can you see the big picture of Abraham’s testing? God had a plan to send Jesus!
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