I know it’s been a while since I blogged and I’ve been waiting for the right time to publish …but at this point, I have so many topics in my mind and some new things brewing (hehe) I need to get on here and start letting these thoughts out before I burst!
One idea that I was wrestling with last week was this idea of sacrifice. For many of us, we consider a sacrifice something that we give up (more by choice). For example, we choose to sacrifice our social media presence when we feel like we need a mental break. We can choose to go on a strict budget and sacrifice our Manhattan lunch money to save for a goal. We can also choose to sacrifice soda and sweets for some weight loss so we can look like five course meals all summer. But is it a sacrifice still if our hearts aren’t in the choice?
Your response may be, “Yes, Wyneisha. My heart was in the choice to give up $15 lunches to make that trip.” Or you may be thinking, “Wyneisha, do you know how many tricks I had to play on my mind to consume salads instead of fries?” Yeah, I feel you.
I think the aspect I’m thinking of is when God requests something of us and we decide that we can give it up and pick it back up in the next moment instead of just focusing on God’s instruction to just give it up.
There aren’t any additional directions or details, however, we sometimes fool ourselves into thinking that our hearts are really in touch with the heart of God.
You know where I’m going with this – the story of Abraham’s almost sacrifice of Isaac, his only son.
Abraham was a man from the land of Ur. We encounter his story in the first book of the Bible – Genesis – chapter 12 to be exact. God asks him to leave his home – his familiar place – and to go to a land that He will show him (Gen. 12:1). It’s crazy how God puts out that request to Abraham (then known as Abram) without any real back story or context. I don’t know if this is the first encounter Abram has with God ever but it’s a bold request that Abram follows.
After some twists and turns in the story, God promises Abram, who at the time was without an heir, that he will become the father of many nations (Gen. 15:5). Abram probably thought this was impossible because he was in his old age and so was his wife, Sarai. And that’s just like God to promise the impossible but *actually* come through on the promise.
What’s a promise to us is already a reality to God.
So God comes through for Abram (who is at this point Abraham) and Sarah (formerly known as Sarai) and they have a child together – Isaac. And this is when God turns up with a test of faith in Gen. 22!
So God asks Abraham to sacrifice his only child. And what’s crazy about this is that God knows that Abraham loves his son (Gen. 22:2) so the request is huge. But something else hit me about this – God’s promise to Abraham about having many descendants was connected to Isaac. Although Abraham had another son (chileee), Isaac was connected to the promise and reality of God. So it wasn’t just Isaac that Abraham would be destroying and killing, but his legacy and identity that would outlast him. But I love this story (although a brutal reminder) because it reminds me that faith in God is what makes us long-standing.
So not only did Abraham plan to sacrifice Isaac, not only did he put him on the sacrifice altar, not only did Abraham raise his knife to kill his only son, Abraham did all of this without any question to God. He did it without any concern about his future because he was focused on the present dynamic between him and God.
That’s what I desire. I desire to trust that God’s best is enough for my *present* situation and I have no need to focus and become anxious about my future when God’s promises carry me and outlast me. Like Abraham, I want to be able to sacrifice the things that I’m unsure about and that I can’t figure out because my faith says that God is presently faithful. That God is presently caring. That God is presently taking care of me.
My question can not be about God’s ability to move but about my ability to move in faith. God sacrificed His Son because He was moved by His Love for us. How much more can we trust that God has His best for us? Even in the moments of loss and storm, our focus must from sacrificing things to gaining the security of God *presently*.
God is an ever present help (Psalms 46:1)! So in our moments where we feel helpless, where we are confronted with our desires and God’s promises, let’s push toward the faith that God will meet us at our sacrificial place – and that’s where our faith lies.