What do you do when God speaks but nothing happens? Will you wait without murmuring or find a way to help God out?
I was recently reading Daily Hope with Rick Warren. He approached the subject, What Does God Want While You Wait For An Answer. The devotional immediately caught my attention because in reviewing my list of strengths, waiting was not on the list. So I knew there was information in the devotional just for me! And of course, God wasted no time getting His point across. As I began to read the scripture reference, the first two words leaped off the page….Be Still! Immediately, I responded. “I am following You. I have not veered to the left or right.” Then I heard Him gently say, “Your mouth.” Silence overtook me, which I am sure was His intent. I have read several scriptures that say “be still,” but I never thought for a moment the insinuation was regarding words. As I thought about how I have been waiting, quietly definitely did not describe my disposition. As Pastor Rick shared the familiar story of Abram and Sarai and how they decided to assist God in the fulfillment of His promise, my attention was drawn to their conversation. God promised Abram a son. But the facts were Sarai was old, Abram was even older, and Sarai was infertile. Through human reasoning, our conclusion would have been much like that of Abram and Sarai’s…conception was highly unlikely. Honestly, more like impossible. So what happened? Instead of waiting on God, they took matters into their own hands. Sarai had a plan and after sharing it (there it is!…the mouth!) with Abram….well, we know how the story goes. Abram impregnated Sarai’s maidservant, Hagar. Hagar gave birth to Ishmael. Sarai became angry and ran Hagar and her son away. God made a covenant with Abram, changed their names, and again confirmed His promise. Sarah laughed. Then, God asked the same thing He is asking many of us today, “Is anything too hard for the Lord?”
The manifestation of God’s promises are inevitable. At around the age of 90, Sarah gave birth to Issac, their promised son. Abraham was 100 years old.
When God promises us that our latter shall be greater, that His blessings will overtake us, that our gifts will make room for us, our responsibility is not to devise a plan for success. Manufactured blessings are the result of impatience and are concocted in the finite minds of humans as the best conceivable solution. Manifested blessings are the perfect will of God only achieved by listening to His voice and following His plan.
At the end of Pastor Rick’s message, he brought to light a very relevant point. The turmoil we see today between the Arabs and Jews is the result of the manufactured blessing conjured up by Sarai and Abram.
Manufactured or manifested….You choose!