Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of
many nations, just as it had been said to him, "So shall your offspring be."
Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good
as dead--since he was about a hundred years old--and that Sarah's womb was
also dead. Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of
God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully
persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.
- Romans 4:18-21 NIV
These verses are a great encouragement to those of us who have ever had to
endure long periods of waiting before we saw the fulfillment of God's
promises to us. The emphasis here is upon the fact that Abraham's situation
was completely hopeless. Yet, he believed God's promise to give him a son
in his old age. It was many years before God fulfilled this promise to
Abraham, and he made some mistakes during those years. Still, these verses
don't mention Abraham's doubts, but focus instead on his faith. That fact
should encourage us, too. Though we may struggle with our own doubts from
time to time, if we hold on to God's promises, we will receive our reward
just as Abraham did.
If you are not feeling very hopeful today that God's promises to you will
ever come to pass, I urge you to hold on to your faith. Look at these
verses in Hebrews 10:35-36 NLT: "Do not throw away this confident trust in
the Lord, no matter what happens. Remember the great reward it brings you!
Patient endurance is what you need now, so you will continue to do God's
will. Then you will receive all that He has promised." If you throw your
faith away before God fulfills His promises to you, you will never receive
the reward He has waiting for you. Ask the Lord to give you the patience
and endurance you need to stand strong, then do your part by hanging in
there when the going gets tough. Hebrews 6:12 TLB says, "Be anxious to
follow the example of those who receive all that God has promised them
because of their strong faith and patience." Follow Abraham's example and
receive all that the Lord has promised you. Not only will you be blessed,
but God will be glorified through you, and then you can be an example to
someone else whose faith is faltering. The Living Bible says that Abraham
"praised God for this blessing even before it happened". If you'll begin
thanking God right now for the fulfillment of those promises that look like
they'll never come to pass, your faith will grow in leaps and bounds and you
will delight the heart of God. Take heart from this precious verse in 2
Timothy 2:13 TLB: "Even when we are too weak to have any faith left, he
remains faithful to us and will help us, for he cannot disown us who are
part of himself, and he will always carry out his promises to us"!
Prayer: Lord, whenever I'm tempted to doubt your promises, increase my faith and
give me the patience I need to stand strong. Help me to take my eyes off my
circumstances and rest them on your promises. Thank You for enabling me to
receive all that You have promised!
- J. M. Farro