Recently we listened to a sermon entitled “The Faith of Abraham.” I really hoped it wasn’t going to be about the time God told Abraham to offer his son Isaac as a burnt offering. I don’t like that story very much. It makes me uncomfortable, especially since we’ve lost a child. It pierces me to the very heart because I intimately know the pain involved. And to do it willingly is just, well . . . crazy.
Turns out that’s what the sermon was about. I listened to it, inwardly cringing the whole time. And then something suddenly became clear to me, like someone flipping on a light. The fact that really bothers me is that God is more concerned about our trust, belief and faith in Him than in our comfort, or the absence of pain in our lives.
I let that sink in––really sink in, because I realized that I harbor a belief that true love is more concerned with our comfort level than our trust in God. Ouch. And you know, honestly, I can define long seasons of my life as a struggle to make sense of the pain God has allowed.
Maybe if I truly believed God’s point of view, I wouldn’t be so quick to jump to the conclusion that He really doesn’t love me when things are hard. Maybe I could realize that He is refining my faith. Maybe the constant struggles of living on the mission field would take on deeper meaning rather than only being constant, chaffing frustrations.
It makes no sense on the human level––only on the eternal level. I want the eyes to see by faith, to see things from God’s perspective. Give us, your people, Oh Lord, a faith like Abraham.