They call You the God of Abraham, but You are
Also the God of Sarah, Chaldaean Princess, called to
Serve her Lord and Master, mother of mighty multitudes
Who remained unrealized, unbegotten, unbegun
Only in stubborn fact. She knew, believed that Your promises
Stand, judged You faithful even as she stood
And laughed in the shadowed uncertainty of the tent, compelled to
Wait a little longer for the echo of her laughter to return.
–Mark J. Leamy
Yesterday we discussed Abraham, and barely mentioned Sarah. Maybe you feel like a “barely mentioned” character right now. Perhaps you are feeling anything but thankful this Thanksgiving.
How did Sarah cope during the long years of waiting, when all the women she knew had been blessed with not only children but grandchildren and great-grandchildren? She had a great big promise and a very empty cradle.
Read Genesis 18:1-14. (All the scriptures that are not quoted directly in the blog are here.)
Now look at what Hebrews 11 says about her. This is the great Faith Chapter of the Bible, memorializing many Old Testament saints who trusted God.
…By faith Sarah herself received power to conceive, even when she was past the age, since she considered him faithful who had promised. (Hebrews 11:11)
This is more important than that moment of laughter. This is the confidence that Sarah lived by. “She considered him faithful who had promised.” God’s faithfulness was her confidence.
Did you notice the words that begin each line of Mark’s poem about Sarah? “They also serve who only stand and wait.” This is a quote from a poem by John Milton (“When I Consider How My Light is Spent”). Milton mentions the angels who serve God by speeding over land and ocean at his command, and then he states that those who are simply waiting for God’s next command are serving him also.
If you are in the shadows today, feeling forgotten, or waiting on what seems like an unanswered prayer, let God’s faithfulness speak to your heart.
Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long. (Psalm 25:4-5)
Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the Lord! (Psalm 27:14)
Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust him, and he will help you.
He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn,
and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun.
Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for him to act.
Don’t worry about evil people who prosper or fret about their wicked schemes.(Psalm 37:5-7 NLT)
I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire.
He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along.
He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see what he has done and be amazed.
They will put their trust in the Lord. (Psalm 40:1-3 NLT)
From of old no one has heard or perceived by the ear,
no eye has seen a God besides you,
who acts for those who wait for him. (Isaiah 64:4)
Lord, you are faithful.
Faithful to lead me in your truth.
Faithful to hear my cry.
Faithful to lift me out of the mud and the mire.
Faithful to give me a new song,
that might not be quite what I had expected to sing.
Photo credit: Amy Mayfield