Finish Strong

Genesis 25:1-6
Main Verse: Genesis 25:1
by Brian Phillips

Reflection
This passage is an account of the last days of Abraham.  And, oh, what last days they were!

At age 175, probably three times as old as you and I will be when we pass away, Abraham died.  But, did he slow down in his old age?  Hardly.  At over 100 years old, Abraham marries another woman following the death of his wife, Sarah.  And then he fathers six sons.

Talk about a late starter!  At age eighty-six, Abraham fathered Ishmael.  At one hundred, he fathered Isaac.  And somewhere around one hundred thirty-seven, he starts adding more children to the list before he dies.  Now that’s finishing strong!

Earlier in his life, God promised that He would make a great nation out of Abraham’s descendants.  But, by the time he was eighty-six, he still had no son with Sarah.  Abraham could have easily given up on God.  And, who would have blamed him?  Thinking they had to take things in their own hands, Abraham and Sarah decided to speed the timetable up a little in order to “help” God fulfill His promise.  So, with Sarah’s permission, Abraham slept with one of the servant girls.  And that was how Ishmael was born.

But that wasn’t God’s perfect plan for Abraham and Sarah.  His promise was actually fulfilled when Sarah became pregnant with Isaac.  When she was ninety!  And in the last 75 years of Abraham’s life, God’s promise to him began to take shape with the birth of Isaac and his half-brothers.

Food for Thought
Have you ever had a hard time waiting for someone to make good on a promise?

When I was little, my parents promised me I could have a dog.  I wanted something big.  Like a Rottweiler.  They suggested a Schnauzer.  Something smaller and nicer.

A Schnauzer!  What an insult.

I bugged them until they finally compromised.  They got me an English Sheepdog.  Something big, but friendly.  I was happy for, oh, say . . . one day.

The dog was nice, sure.  But it was too big.  It would pin me down, licking my face while I screamed, “Get him off me!”

I traded him in for a Schnauzer.

So What Now?
Don’t rush God.  He has the whole perspective on your life, and will fulfill His promises to you in due time.

Prayer
Lord, give me the faith to trust in you, even when it seems like you’re not answering my prayers the way I want you to.  Give me the strength to finish strong, knowing that your timetable is not always the same as mine.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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