When "I Don't Know" Is The Right Answer
As we see to follow Jesus, we sometimes have to wrestle with the tension between waiting and going. Some people should go when they should wait, and others wait when they should go. If we pay attention to some of the details in the story of Abram, there are some key lessons to help us follow Christ.
Here are some observations:
1. We all have a tendency to settle. Terah set out to go to Canaan, but he didn't make it.
Terah took Abram his son and Lot the son of Haran, his grandson, and Sarai his daughter-in-law, his son Abram's wife, and they went forth together from Ur of the Chaldeans to go into the land of Canaan, but when they came to Haran, they settled there. The days of Terah were 205 years, and Terah died in Haran.
My grandfather used to take me fishing on the Little Ocmulgee river outside of McRae, Georgia. The anticipation would grow as we would pack tackle and food and supplies and stop to pick up live bait. The thrill was at an fever pitch while we backed the boat down into the water and he cranked the engine as it started to get just a bit light. As we wound down the river, I would see a spot where I knew fish would be, and he would calmly say, "There's a better spot over here." That back and forth would replay several times until we finally got to the spot he intended and where, sure enough, there was an abundance of fish.
If we let him, God will take us to a great place.
2. God's Leadership Is Different From Our Expectation: Abrham Didn't Know Where He Was Going.
Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you. Genesis 12:1
Can you imagine the conversation Abram had with Sarah?
A: Honey, back your bags, we're going.
S: Where we going?
A: I don't know.
S: What should I pack?
S: What's the weather going to be like?
A: I don't know.
S: You're not being real helpful.
A: God says it will be good if we go.
S: Go where?
A: I don't know.
God leading his people into the great unkown is normal. That's why Christianity is called "a faith." More than a set of propositions, God actually expects us to trust him.
3. God Promises Stuff Only He Can Do: His supernatural blessing is greater than anything we can concoct on our own.
And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. Genesis 12:2-3
We can't make ourselves a great nation, and we can't bless ourselves. God makes some audacious promises to us, and in Him those promises are met.
4. There is Provision for the Plan: Don't Forget The Moneybag
So Abram went, as the Lord had told him, and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran. 5 And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother's son, and all their possessions that they had gathered, and the people that they had acquired in Haran, and they set out to go to the land of Canaan. Genesis 12:4-6
If Haran served any strategic purpose it was to give Abram and Sarai an opportunity to let God fill their money bag. The Lord is a good shepherd who leads us by green pastures and still waters. He restores our souls. He lets us rest when we need it. And he gives us abundant provision for the journey.
So what do we do with this? What do we learn?
1. Terah went and settled; Abram separated and followed.
2. Starting the journey is more important that the final destination.
3. God knows the end; sometimes we don't.
4. God makes God-sized promises to us that only He can keep.
5. Provision is for the purpose of possessing, not to sustain settling.
The Bottom Line: God has more for us - He is "the architect and builder" of an eternal city, and He beckons us to follow Him with abandon. We may not know exactly where we're going, but He does. And the point of the journey is God Himself - HE is our reward, our destination. As long as we get God - the 'where' is really not an issue.
If you feel like your in a fog and unsure what the future holds, it's OK, if you have the confidence that God has you firmly in his hands.