Reading through Genesis again, something hit me which I hadn’t thought too much about before.
Time and time again, God answered prayers, but in some instances it took many years of heartache and suffering before that answer came.
Abraham was told he would be “the father of nations.”
Problem was, he was 100 years old—and his wife, Sarah, 90 years old—before his first son was even born! He went years, decades, with no children, and nothing to hold on to except the promises of God.
Abraham and Sarah’s son, Isaac, married Rebekah when he was 40 years old. Genesis chapter 25 says, “Isaac pleaded with the Lord on behalf of his wife, because she was unable to have children. The Lord answered Isaac’s prayer, and Rebekah became pregnant with twins (21).”
That’s awesome, right? WOOHOO! Isaac prayed, God answered.
What a lovely story.
Right, but notice this:
“Isaac was 60 years old when the twins were born (26b).”
Think back on the really bad times of your life, which have now passed. You tell the story much like I did above. The gist of these tales ends up something like, “We went through a difficult time, but eventually it passed and now things are much better.”
God told Noah to build an ark to save him and his family from the coming flood.
Noah built the ark, the rains came, they were saved and then began repopulating the earth.
COOL STORY, BRO!
Thing is, it took 120 years to build the ark.
Yeah, 120 years.
And while it rained for 40 days and nights, Noah and his family were trapped in that smelly, old ark for a little over a year.
David was told he’d be king when he was young, but spent many years waiting, including several years on the run from King Saul, who was trying to kill him.
Job lost everything: all his children were killed, nearly all his servants died, and he was left in ruins. In the end, however, he got back twice as much as he had before. It was even said, “Nowhere in all the land were there found women as beautiful as Job’s daughters, and their father granted them an inheritance along with their brothers.” (Job 42:15).
Yeah, he was rewarded for making it through his trials, but had to go through hell to get there.
Jesus came to earth KNOWING He had to die in order to save mankind.
He had to suffer His dark night of the soul, being tortured and murdered like a common criminal, before achieving His goal. He had to suffer darkness in order to make it back to the light.
The one thing all these have in common, however, is each of these DID achieve their goal. They made it through the howling, black winds of night, the stunning, dawn sunrise eventually breaking through, with its cascading purples, pinks and blues.
And you will make it through your trial as well. It doesn’t feel like it now, but you will. I’m sure it didn’t feel like that to Isaac, David and all the rest, but God saw the end-game.
Heck, He created the end-game! He sees the beginning, middle and end of your trial, and He’s rooting you on.
He told me to remind you of that this morning.
So don’t despair! You’ll make it, I promise.
Many blessings to you and yours. Love you, and my family and I are praying for you!