Have you ever believed beyond a shadow of a doubt that the Lord told you to do something? And that your obedience to Him would lead to a blessing? You believed it so much that you actually stepped out and did it. You may have not even know where the faith came from to do it but you had it and you used it. You said to yourself “If God told me to do it then He’s going to show me how to do it and He’s going to make everything work out.” Right? Then you come up with all of these preconceived ideas of how it’s all going to play out. Mistake number one! I know because I’ve been there and done that plenty of times. Then when things don’t go as you imagined they would or should you get discouraged and start to lose hope. Mistake number two!
I’m reminded of the story of Abraham. First God tells Abraham to leave his family and everything he knows to go to a land that He would show him. Then He told Abraham He would make him a great nation, bless him, make his name great and that he would be a blessing to all the people of the earth. God didn’t tell him where he was going. He didn’t tell him how he was going to become a great nation or how he would be a blessing to all the earth. There were no details. Abraham did as God told him to do. He took one day at a time and followed as God led him.
I wonder if, like us, Abraham had his own preconceived ideas of how all that God told him was going to play out? I suspect he did (Genesis 12-21). If Abraham had not wondered how God was going to make him a great nation then there would have been no Ishmael. Abraham and Sarah were getting discouraged and losing hope. So they took matters into their own hands. God was taking too long! They wanted to help God keep His promise. As if God needs our help. But isn’t that what we do? We start to get impatient with God so we start to question things and try to make sense of things. After all, we have to be logical. We think things like “Well maybe God meant this or maybe God wants me to do that.” We just end up making a mess of things.
Isaac was the promise from God. Isaac was how Abraham was going to be a great nation. The promise of Isaac came over twenty-five years after the promise was made. Abraham was one hundred years old when his son of promise was born. Sarah was past childbearing age. God taught Abraham a lot of lessons in those twenty-five years. God waited until He would get all of the glory and until Abraham was ready before He fulfilled the promise He had made to him.
Maybe things aren’t going as you thought they would. Maybe you are getting impatient with God. Maybe you are thinking about taking things into your own hands and helping God out. Maybe God is working things out in you and making you ready for the promise. Maybe God is waiting to fulfill His promise to you when He knows that no one else will get the glory but Him.
Don’t give up hope! God always keeps His promises (Psalm 108:4 For great is your love, higher than the heavens; Your faithfulness reaches to the skies.) His thoughts are not our thoughts and His ways are not our ways (Isaiah 55:8). Take one day at a time and follow God. He will show you the way and He will fulfill His promise to you.