Ignoring the Promises of God (Genesis 16:2) - Radical

Ignoring the Promises of God (Genesis 16:2)

“And Sarai said to Abram, ‘Behold now, the Lord has prevented me from bearing children. Go into my servant. It may be that I shall obtain children by her.’ And Abraham listened to the voice of Sarai.”
-Genesis 16:2

This is a sobering picture of a lack of trust in the promises of God. God has told Abram in powerful ways, “I’ve made a covenant with you, and I will provide you with offspring.” Yet Sarai, his wife is barren. So Sarai and Abraham are wondering, “Well, is God going to be faithful to His promise or not?” Instead of waiting on God to prove faithful to His promise, they decided to take things into their own hands and have a child through someone else.

In this passage, we see a blatant disregard for the promise of God.

In this verse, we see a picture of a tendency in every single one of us, myself included like we want things to happen on our timeline, the way we plan, the way we plot, the way we want to work out, the way we think is best. Maybe even the only way we see it’s going to happen. We fail to trust in God and His timeline and His ways, which are always wisest, which are always best.

So I just want to encourage you as you look at your life now or in the future, and you are waiting on God for this or waiting on God for that. I just want to encourage you to wait with trust in Him, not to take things into your own hands.

Now that doesn’t mean waiting is always passive and sitting back and doing nothing. I think about the process that my family and I are in waiting to adopt our son, who we’ve been on hold for about a year from going to bring into our home. It’s been agonizing and I’ve been working in every single way I can to make a way to him.

At the same time, the Lord has been teaching me, amidst my working and nothing happening, that I can wait patiently on Him and trust that He is working in ways I don’t see and that He will provide in His time. That’s easy to say. It’s a whole another thing to actually believe that and to wait with faith, but I want to encourage us. God is good. God is faithful. God is loving. God is all-wise and we can trust in Him in the waiting.

So, God, we pray for patience in our lives. We pray for patient trust in you, for patient rest in you when we want to take things into our own hands when we are tempted to go outside of what you have told us to do. God, we pray that you would keep us, save us, guard us, deliver us from ourselves and that tendency and help us to wait on you.

We confess together today that you are trustworthy. You are so worthy of our trust. You have shown it time and time and time again. Ultimately, you’ve shown it in sending your Son to die on a cross for our sins to save us for yourself forever. If we can trust you to lead us to eternal life with you, then we can trust you with anything in this world.

So, God, I pray for those who are waiting in different ways right now. I pray that you’d give them strength in the waiting. You give them patience in the waiting and faith in the waiting. Even as I pray for these things for myself and my family, we will trust in you and lean not on our own understanding.

God, please keep us from any way going outside of your will and your Word. Help us to walk in step with your spirit as we wait for your timing, for your provision, according to your good and perfect will. In Jesus’ name, we wait. Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.

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