Blogger’s Note: For the remainder of December Pastor Swindoll will be looking at three brief character studies which give him the opportunity to make some closing points for the year. The first of these deals with the great patriarch, Abraham.
Passage for Study: Genesis 22: 1 – 2 … 1 Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!”
And he said, “Here I am.”
2 Then He said, “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”
My Journal for Today: If you’re a Bible reading, Bible studying Christian, as I would pray we all are, especially those reading here, we know what happens after reading this passage. Pastor Swindoll has gone to Abraham for today’s devotional lesson. And perhaps you can identify with Swindoll’s main point today, as he writes, ”… Anything we hold dear, we must learn to hold loosely. … If we hold anything too tightly, it probably has us rather then our having it.” I definitely agree with Pastor Chuck that we do have a tendency to clutch too closely the things we adore the most.
And for those of us who’ve been blessed as parents to steward the growth and development of children, given to us by God, when they grow up and leave the nest, it can be difficult to let them go. And can you imagine what Abraham, who had been given one – and only one - son so late in life, must have thought when God put him through that horrible test of faith with Isaac? But we know just how much trust Abraham put in God by following exactly what God instructed him to do, just as he had done years earlier when God told him to pack up everything and go to a land Abram knew not (see Genesis 12).
What are you holding onto too tightly, not trusting your life and times to God? Is it your security, your money, your talents, or maybe your time? Maybe it’s even your child or children. Oh, how we have a tendency to grip tightly those things in our lives we’ve come to hold onto so dearly. But my friend, we have to decide, as did Abraham, if we can live under the exhortation of Proverbs 3: 5, … to … “Trust in the Lord with ALL our heart!” (emphasis added) God’s word doesn’t say MOST of our heart; does it? And all too often in my past I’ve held too tightly to stuff in my life, … things which became idols of possession rather than tools of stewardship for God’s glory. And even our kids can become that to us.
So, I take this lesson today under the conviction of my past attitudes and actions; and I point myself in a direction to LET GO AND LET GOD. Will we join Abraham and let go of even the things which mean the most to us? Will we have enough faith and trust in God to give everything which He’s given to us over to Him so that He can truly be THE LORD in our lives? That is my prayer here today.
My Prayer for Today: Lord, take it all. Take me. Test me if You must; but let all You’ve given to me be Yours … for Your glory. Amen