“The Lord has kept me from having children.
Go, sleep with my slave; perhaps I can build a family through her.”
God’s promise of an heir and the interminable waiting now takes a painful turn, as Abram and Sarai contrive their own solution to the problem. A child is born, but not a child of the promise, and not surprisingly, a conflict is born that continues to have a rippling effect even into our present day.
Waiting on God presents tremendous challenges, doesn’t it? We too easily develop our own timetable of what seems reasonable, hoping that God will conform to our own timetable.
Remember how Moses went up on the mountain to receive the commands from the Lord? Apparently he was gone longer than the people were comfortable with, and they took matters into their own hands.
When the people saw that Moses was so long in coming down from the mountain, they gathered around Aaron and said, “Come, make us gods who will go before us. As for this fellow Moses who brought us up out of Egypt, we don’t know what has happened to him.” EXODUS 32:1
And what follows, makes Exodus 32 one of the most heartbreaking chapters in all of Scripture. Our God has strong words for those who charge ahead without first considering whether or not it is in His will and plan.
“Woe to the obstinate children,” declares the Lord, “to those who carry out plans that are not mine, forming an alliance, but not by my Spirit, heaping sin upon sin; who go down to Egypt without consulting me. ISAIAH 30:1-2
Let’s not be obstinate children. Let’s not have to be controlled by “bit and bridle.” (Psalm 32:9) As we consider the cul de sac that Abram and Sarai take this Sunday, may we be more and more the people of God who say, “your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”