Summary: Message about faith and believing God.
Title: Quite Laughing
Theme: To show the importance of trusting God when we pray.
Scripture: Genesis 18:1-15
The Lord called Abram and Sari out of the Ur of Chaldeans to go out into the land of Canaan. Genesis 12 describes this calling:
Genesis 12:1-3 Now the Lord had said to Abram: "Get out of your country, From your family And from your father's house, To a land that I will show you. (2) I will make you a great nation; I will bless you And make your name great; And you shall be a blessing. (3) I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed."
1) I will make you a great nation 2) I will bless you 3) Make your name great 4) You shall be a blessing 5) I will bless those who bless you 6) I will curse those who curse you.
Max Lucado describes what it must have been like when Sarah first heard the news from Abraham that they were going to have a baby 24 years earlier.
“She gets excited. She visits the maternity shop and buys a few dresses. She plans her shower and remodels her tent … but no son. She eats a few birthday cakes and blows out a lot of candles … still no son. She goes through a decade of wall calendars … still no son. Finally the wallpaper in the nursery is faded and the baby furniture is several seasons out of date … and the topic of the promised child only brings sighs and tears and long looks into a silent sky.”
By the time we get to this passage it has been 24 years. 24 years of silent promises. 24 years of broken hearts. She has begun to accept that the promise that God has given was never going to happen. Or at least through her. She had been waiting. Did Abram really hear from God? We the prophet correct? Maybe she was not the right person. That is where Hagar and Ishmael came in.
Now another reason for Sarah to laugh at God’s promise for a child was the long delay in the fulfillment of the promise. It had been 24 years since Abraham first heard the promise from God that he was going to be a father.
You know, long delays in a promise often leads to a weakened faith. You think will it ever happen? Has God forgotten?
Have you been there? Are you there now? At a point where you are laughing at God's promises. Questioning if it was really God in the first place.
.... the promise of a child yet the nursery is empty
..... the promise of peace yet the storms keep coming
.... the promise of salvation for your children yet they seem to get deeper and deeper
.... the promise of a spouse yet everyone you meet seems to hurt you more than hurt you
You may have been just like Sarah and thought, maybe it wasn't you, maybe you misunderstood. Maybe the prophet did get the right person. I am here to tell you today that the Lord says it is time to start digging the old wells. We have come to accustomed to let downs, and satisfied with a little.
So what do you do when you are at that point?
The Lord reminded me of two stories in the Bible where people had to deal with this. I think that there are some things we can learn from
Zachariah and the Angel in the Temple
The Bible says that Zachariah went the temple to fulfill his duty. He was faithful. Yet he was disappointed.
any he is in the temple praying he is visited by "the angel of the Lord".
Your Prayers are Heard
Luke 1:11) Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right side of the altar of incense. (12) And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him. (13) But the angel said to him, "Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your prayer is heard;
Zacharias response and result
(18) And Zacharias said to the angel, "How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is well advanced in years." (19) And the angel answered and said to him, "I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God, and was sent to speak to you and bring you these glad tidings. (20) But behold, you will be mute and not able to speak until the day these things take place, because you did not believe my words which will be fulfilled in their own time."
Voice of Doubt