“Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed and was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised.” Hebrews 11:11
Why would Sarah be willing to leave all that was familiar to her, and commit to a life of wandering? The promise that God had made to Abraham reached far beyond just giving him and Sarah a son. God had told him that he would become a great nation and that through that nation all the earth would be blessed. Redemption from sin and the means of salvation from divine judgment were included in that promise. Sarah understood that promise.
“And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.” Galatians 3:8
Despite her faith, she knew that her age was a threat to the fulfillment of the promise. She must have constantly thought about this as the years went by. But God kept giving her reasons to hope. In Genesis 15:7-21 we see the Lord restating and expanding His promise and confirming the covenant. This covenant was about what God would do, it made no demands of Abraham or Sarah. If Sarah could only have fully realized this, her burden would have been less.
When Sarah was 89 years old, God spoke to Abraham again, telling him that the promised son would be born the next year. We can fully understand why Sarah, who was listening from the tent, began to laugh. Her laughter was probably not one of sarcasm, but an honest response because she knew she was well past the age of childbearing. Sarah did not know these men and naturally it would be hard for her to take them at their word.
Sarah set us a great example of faith, trusting God for the impossible, even though it took a long time to be fulfilled.
Has God given you a promise? Maybe there is a loved one that is not serving God, but as you have prayed, you have felt the Lord speak and tell you just to trust Him and that He will bring them into the fold. Hang on the promise, keep praying and wait for the Lord to bring it to pass.
Prayer: Jesus, thank you for the example of faith that Sarah exhibited through the long years of waiting for the promise. Help us to trust you completely.
Devotion by Anne Johnston