A Deep, Unbroken Promise
My body is aged beyond my years. In days of old, a man of even one hundred years was still considered young, but I am old.
My hips ache in pain just from getting out of bed. My eyes can see across the street, but not beyond that house. I am old. My hands are weak. My wife is old in years. We always wanted to have a baby, but it appears that the LORD had other plans. My elders have told me not to question the will of the LORD, and I almost never have. I had a dream of a son, a little boy to call my own, laughing and playing in the field and running to me as I held him in my arms. Then I woke up, and realized it was all just a dream, and I wept.
I am thankful that the LORD has blessed me as much as He has. My brother’s children often come to visit me. They are happy, and they say “Uncle, we are your sons.” In this way, the LORD has blessed me more than I could hope for. Those who have children from their own loins are never as blessed as I.
My wife, Sarai, had that look in her eye today. I could sense her pain, and I knew what it meant. She wished she had a son, a boy to call her own. It was probably worse for her, as we walked in the streets women would stare at her. They almost never said anything, but you could tell what they were thinking “That’s the cursed woman, who could not bear a child, and make her husband a father.”
That night I thanked the LORD for all that He had made after I ate the cake that my wife made with the soup. My old body was tired, and my bones were sore, and my hips were like those from a skeleton of a person who had been left out to dry in the desert after his death.
I was thinking the next day about the desire that I had for my wife to be happy. I was thankful for what the LORD had given me, and so was she, but I could see her pain. I just wanted to see her smile, more than anything. I wished that I could have given her a son during our lives, but that time had long since passed. I could not give her more than my affection and my home. I loved her so much, and it broke my heart in half to hear her cry at night, when she thought that I was asleep.
Then the LORD came to me, and said;
“Go forth from your country,
And from your relatives
And from your father’s house,
To the land which I will show you;
And I will make you a great nation,
And I will bless you,
And make your name great;
And so you shall be a blessing;
And I will bless those who bless you,
And the one who curses you I will curse.
And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.”
In the years to come, God’s promise did not become smaller, but great. He said to me “indeed I will greatly bless you, and I will greatly multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your seed shall possess the gate of their enemies.” Genesis 22:17 God promised Abraham to make his descendants like the grains of sand or like the number of stars. This was written in a time when man though that there were only a few thousand stars in the universe. Thousands of years later, science would confirm that indeed the number of stars can be compared to the grains of sand on the beaches of the world. God was right and man was wrong. Today, millions of people are descended from an old man and an old woman, who could not possibly have children, but to whom God promised to create a nation from their bodies.
The words of God come from a section of Genesis 12:1-3 and from Genesis 22:17