January 15, 2013

Abram's Simple Obedience

Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said, ‘To your offspring I will give this land.’” (Gen 12:7)

Set your goals. Make a difference. Evaluate. What did you accomplish? Were you successful? We spend much of our time and energy trying to get things done. We mark our progress so we can know if we were successful or not. We spend our lives trying to accomplish something significant. When we celebrate someone’s life, we celebrate them for what they did.

Abram was known for being a man of faith. “By faith Abraham...obeyed.” (Hebrews 12:8) God promised Abram that he would be the father of many nations, that the number his descendants would be too many to count, and that his offspring would receive the promised land. But he never promised Abram that he would see or benefit from any of this.

Is it possible that we so caught up in trying to be something great for God, that we fail to simply obey Him now? Not to say that goals shouldn’t be set, or that passions and dreams shouldn’t be pursued. But, maybe instead of trying to make a name for ourselves, we should spend our time and energy simply pursuing God and responding to Him in obedience.

God obviously used Abram, but Abram never saw how God used him. Abram simply lived his life and obeyed God’s calling. When God said “Go to the land I will show you,” Abram packed up his family and went. When God said “I will make of you a great nation,” Abram simply tried to start a family. Of course, as you read about Abram’s later years, he became desperate to try and make God’s plan work out. All he did was create a big mess. Abram didn’t really do anything significant, at least in man’s eyes. What Abram did do was obey. He just did what God told him to do.

And long after Abram died, God fulfilled His plan. Abram did become the father of a great nation. Abram’s descendants did become more numerous that could be counted. Abram’s descendants did receive the land that God had promised to Abram. Even though Abram didn’t live to see how God used him, God used him because he faithfully followed and obeyed God.

Are you striving to make yourself great in God’s kingdom? Maybe we should quit trying so hard, and focus on simple obedience instead. Be faithful to complete the tasks God has put in front of you today. Rather than trying to be a part of the completed plan of God, be the part of His plan that He is calling you to be.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Fantastic insight! Thank you. Gary J