Against All Hope
There is an old fable about a man who was seventy-five years old. This man wasn't an ordinary individual, no, he was far too righteous to be considered ordinary. He was bold, brave, and incredibly faithful. He had to be, for in his community to be child-less was a disgusting reality that many looked down upon.
And he was child-less.
But not for lack of trying. I'm sure this man and his wife had been trying for a while. Unfortunately, at his wife's age, all hope was lost for them to conceive and have kids of their own. That was the case until a magic being promised this man and his wife countless children.
A foul promise for a faithful servant.
Twenty-five years later, however, something magical happened. The righteous man and his loyal wife conceived. The man was one hundred years old when the magic being's promise came true.
Perhaps, this fable has something we can squeeze from it. Or, perhaps, this isn't a fable at all.
Perhaps, this is the story of Abraham and Sarah.
Hope, Line, and Sinker
Hope is a riveting four-letter word. One person's hope is often someone else's reality, making it difficult to hide our feelings of envy or pride.
Some hope for healing.
Some hope for peace.
Some hope for financial security.
What do you hope for?
Abraham and Sarah were infertile for decades. Even after God promised them a child, they waited another 25 years before their prayers were answered. Most of us would've given up by then. I know I would have.
That's why I was humbled this morning when reading Paul's letter to the church in Rome:
"Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.”Without weakening in his faith, he acknowledged the decrepitness of his body (since he was about a hundred years old) and the lifelessness of Sarah’s womb. Yet he did not waver through disbelief in the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God was able to do what He had promised." (Romans 4:18-21 BSB, Emphasis my Own)
When all hope ceased, Abraham believed.
Without weakening in his faith, He acknowledged his faults and still clung to what he knew to be true about God.
That God was powerful.
That God was merciful. That God would not abandon him.
He did not waver through disbelief. No, instead he chose to stay fully persuaded that God was able to do what He promised.
I'm not sure what you're hoping for today, but whatever it is, don't cease praying. Don't cease listening. Don't cease learning. Don't cease caring. Don't cease serving. Don't cease giving. Don't cease believing.
Don't cease hoping.
For you are the one who Jesus loves.