I’m still reading through Genesis. I’m taking my time and really relishing the information that I come across. It’s amazing, the facts I didn’t know about these stories. And it’s the little things that are popping out to me that are surprising. I’ll be covering a few of them in different posts.
In Genesis 26:1-6 the bible tells about a famine. Isaac went to be with the King of the Philistines in Gerar and it was there that God told him to stay. Even though there was a famine, God told Isaac that he would provide for his needs.
At this point, Isaac is married to Rebekah and they have twin boys.
Lets put ourselves in this situation for a bit and assess the reality of what is happening to Isaac. He’s 60ish, he has a beautiful wife, Rebekah, and two sons. Food is scarce and he has the means to bring his family to a place where he can provide a more full life for them. A place where he can provide the necessity of food…He has the choice to either listen to the voice of God and do something different, daring and maybe strange and stay in a place where he can’t, in the worlds eyes, provide for his family or he can pack up his house and bring them to a land where it makes sense to raise a young family. God spoke to Isaac, not his family, not his wife, God spoke to Isaac. Can you imagine what Isaac’s family was saying? “I can’t believe he would treat his family this way! Why doesn’t he provide food for them? I mean, isn’t that what a husbands job is?! Who cares what he thinks God has told him! It’s completely irresponsible to not provide their basic needs for them! That’s his JOB! God would never tell him not to provide for his family!”
Isaac’s servants were grumbling behind his back, his brother kept messaging him to tempt him with thoughts of moving, all Isaac’s friends were moving to a more prosperous land…And it made sense. Why not just forget this voice in his head, who knows if it really was God anyways?, and go with the more accepted way of doing things? No, these comments aren’t biblically based, their my human opinion of what the other details of the story might be. But I wonder if they aren’t a bit of what was happening to Isaac…
And wow, does this ever sound like a situation I just went through this Christmas.
The situation with my marriage doesn’t make sense to many people. I have comments about moving on, checking out so-and-so, finding a new man…frequently. But God has told me to wait for my husband, no matter how long it takes and not matter what the circumstances look like to the human eye. God has told me to wait. So I wait.
The situation with my job doesn’t make sense to many people. I have comments about finding a better paying job constantly. Stats on the income another job could give me. Comments about my living arrangements. Discussions about my car and possible repairs it may require soon. But God told me to work at this restaurant and so I work.
My life makes no sense to the majority of people to hear my story. At first some people will admire what I am doing and then when they see some of the realities of what I have to “deal with”, they start to question whether I should start to take the direction of my life into my own hands.
Sometimes trusting and walking in God’s instructions to you will look like irresponsibility. Don’t kid yourself into thinking the bible preaches otherwise. Like Isaac, sometimes we need to ignore what others are saying around us and look ONLY to God and what he is telling us. HE is all that matters, not the opinions of those around us. Take what they say with a grain of salt. Line it up with scripture as well as God’s personal instruction to you and then see what you can take from it. And sometimes you’ll need to block what they say completely.
I know what God has told me, I know the promises he has given me, I know the instructions he has given me. And until he shows me otherwise, I will walk in those promises and instructions regardless of how much sense it makes to those around me. It’s my GOD’s opinion of me that I have to live with eternally, not my friend’s or family’s.
God’s instruction won’t always make sense, but he is God. Not only does he know best, but he has the means and the ability to provide for your every. single. need. Sometimes his plans don’t seem to make sense. But God can see the entire picture. If he has given you instruction, trust him. It might not make sense right now, but one day you will look back and realize he was right.
Later in Genesis it says that Isaac planted crops and harvested a hundredfold. He became rich, it says, and he had so many flocks and herds servants that the Philistines envied him (Genesis 26:12-14). Isaac became so rich that the King asked him to move away from his lands because he was too powerful…
And I bet that when God asked Isaac to stay in the famine infested land, there was no way Isaac could have predicted that blessing happening to him.