Living Word Lutheran Church
If you thought last week was hot actually it was more humid than anything. I was able to live in the desert for 9 months, 120 miles north of the Persian Gulf, known as the Arabian Gulf by many who live there. It's hot there, so they can call their sea anything they want. Place names can weave a fascinating story of faith, trust, hope and promise. The same is true of people. I once met a man named Willie Sing. He didn't because he wouldn't. He needed a new name.
If you read the Bible, you are familiar with the teaching that your name is to be written into the Lamb's Book of Life. It's the list of names of people saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ who will enter heaven upon Christ's return or their death, whichever comes first. If you have any doubt about whether your name is written there, pray about it right now; ask Jesus into your heart by changing you through the Holy Spirit. Pray in Jesus' name. It works.
God once dealt with a barren woman who reached the magic age of 65; retirement, right? Wrong. Her husband was 75 and decided to move the family several hundred miles north - on foot. To make matters more interesting, he told her that one day she would finally have a son. So they waited. Ten years passed. No baby - 75 years old and "still" barren.
Deciding that God needed some help she contracted with another woman - known to be fertile - to produce a son for her husband as a surrogate. The plan "worked," but it was not God's idea. So after 13 more years, God reminded the couple, now 99 and 89, that it would happen within one year's time. She laughed. God then changed her name from Sarai to Sarah, which means "princess." The baby came right on schedule and was named Isaac "laughter."
Often it seems that we are moved only by the "more impossible" events that unfold right before our eyes. Is that because faith has its roots in the most impossible things - such as tiny and tremendous miracles - which for human beings are often the sparks which ignite a flame hot enough to melt our iron wills causing us to fully rely on God?
I hope you recognize some elements of this account of God calling Abraham to be the father of many nations. It's recorded in the Bible in Genesis chapter 15. Reading about the roots of Jesus' ancestry and God's covenant with them will require both time and discipline. Regarding them as fact will require faith -?or as some would put it - a minor miracle. The last time I checked, however, God is still into unfolding the miraculous through the currency of the mundane. Go to church this weekend!