Open Your Bible
Genesis 17:1-27, Genesis 18:1-21, Galatians 4:21-31, Galatians 5:1-6
Four years ago, the university where I was working went through financial difficulties and laid off several recent full-time hires. I was one of them. It was devastating since our team was like a close family. After reestablishing financial stability, they extended an offer to come back one year later; and because I was juggling part-time gigs at the time, I accepted. Here’s the crazy thing: it was a far better role than before and wound up being the closest thing I’d ever had to a dream job. The experience led to one of those moments when you think: I sure wouldn’t want to go through that again, but I’m so happy things worked out the way they did. I couldn’t wait to share the good news with my family and, like Abram, say in amazement: “Is anything impossible for the LORD?” (Genesis 18:14).
In Genesis 18, both Abraham and Sarah laugh after the Lord says they’ll have a son in one year’s time. What a crazy claim! Being in their autumn years, how would they have the strength and endurance to raise a child? Abraham responds by laughing to himself and asking if a hundred-year-old man and ninety-year-old woman can have a baby (Genesis 17:17). It’s a legitimate question. But God isn’t even close to being done working the miraculous into Abraham’s story.
God came through for them. He gave them a son, demonstrating it had always been His intention to further their family line. And the story didn’t end there. God not only chose to make Abraham a father, but also the father of many nations and the root of Christ’s lineage (vv.4–5). It wasn’t about how tired or advanced in years the couple was now; it was about the kingdom.
The reason why it’s so important to remember how God worked for our good in the past is because it anchors our trust for the future. My story didn’t have to end with returning to that university, just like Abraham and Sarah’s story didn’t have to end with a male heir. God could shape us and build His kingdom in a million different ways. In the end, we’re left in awe and wonder, laughing and marveling, just like Abraham and Sarah.