DAY 104: Tuesday 30 June
STEPPING INTO THE UNKNOWN
Good morning everyone
Today is day 104 of our daily emails and it is also the 100th day since lockdown – so for once, Falcon Lodge Chapel was ahead of the game even if only by 4 days! It’s 106 days since our last Chapel Coffee Morning and 108 days since our last Sunday service meeting together.
The past 15 weeks have brought us so many stories of caring people across the nation – not just NHS and other essential workers who we applauded on Thursday evenings, but individuals in our church and community who have been looking after those people who have had to shield or have chosen to self-isolate. As the restrictions are slowly being relaxed, I am aware of some of you who are reading this email who have taken a big step to go out from your house, maybe for the first time in weeks and maybe the first time on your own. We see many images on our TV screens of people seemingly irresponsibly going out to beaches, or to illegal gigs or to demonstrate on the streets. Stepping out of your house for the first time after so long must feel like a strange adventure - almost like stepping out into the unknown.
God asked Abraham to leave everything he knew and loved and to step into the unknown. One thing to note here is that God wasn’t the God of Abraham’s father, so it wasn’t like he was brought up in the ways of this God. When Abraham was called by God, he technically didn’t know who this God was and what He was capable of; there was no real reference point to validate ‘this God’. Nonetheless,
Abraham took a risk and with faith made the choice to listen and obey. He left his comfortable home to travel with his wife and father to some unknown country. If Abraham had put on his rational thinking cap, stayed put in Ur and questioned this God and His plan, he would have missed out on what led to the biggest thing of his life- becoming the father of our faith and the father of many nations. Fear could have held him back and that would have been his greatest opportunity gone! But with Abraham we see a great manifestation of faith, love, and trust that helped him to step out into the unknown.
Generally, we find we can trust those we love, because we believe that if someone loves us they want the best for us all the time. So God, who is love, loves us so much He has the best in mind for us at all times,
Jeremiah 29:11 - I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
And in turn, our expression of love should be to trust God enough to believe that He does actually love us and indeed wants the best for us. Therefore, in loving Him we believe when He says ‘Go’, if we take that step to go, even though we may not know exactly where we’re going, He will be right there to lead us all the way. And if he says ‘Do’ even if we we’re unsure of what we’re doing, we trust that He will equip us to actually accomplish and achieve ‘the doing’.
When God asked Abraham to sacrifice Isaac his only son (Genesis 22). Abraham knew God loved him and had his best interest at heart. Abraham’s greatest hope had been for a son which only manifested physically in his old age (Genesis 21:2). Isaac marked the beginning of the everlasting covenant God made with Abraham. God makes these promises to Abraham that He will make him exceedingly fruitful and nations and kings will come from him (Genesis 17:6-9).
Then we read God asks Abraham to sacrifice his only son, this seed that contained Abraham’s fruitful future. This made no sense whatsoever but again Abraham chose to listen and obey, having stepped into the unknown, and believing by faith that God would provide the perfect sacrifice pleasing to God Himself (Genesis 22:8).
- Love for God
- Trust in God’s instructions
- Faith in God’s plan
Abraham showed his love for God and trusted God enough to step into the unknown prepared to even give up his long hoped for son because God asked Him to!
Faith is important because it shows that we love God, believe Him and trust Him even to step into the unknown without fear.
Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.
Here’s a Hymnalong for today >>> WHEN WE WALK (Trust and Obey)
Peter Green has been suffering considerable kidney stone pain for many weeks and can only find relief lying down. Finally, he has a date for a procedure in Solihull hospital on 16 July (actually his wedding anniversary). In the meantime, both Peter and Maureen have to completely self-isolate for 14 days and Peter will need to visit the hospital the week before for a Covid test.
MAKE YOU SMILE:
A boy returning from a school trip to the zoo says to his mother – ‘I saw a giraffe with a neck a mile long’.
His mother responds – ‘Haven’t I told you a million times not to exaggerate!’
A young boy evacuated from London during the blitz was going to bed on his first night away from home. He prayed, “Now I lay me down to sleep.”
Then he added, “And God, please take care of Mummy and Daddy.
And please, God, take good care of Yourself, because if anything happens to You, we’re sunk.”