“These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off and were persuaded of them and embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on earth.”
Although we may never actually see them firsthand or hold them in our hand, by faith we receive the promises of God and rejoice in them because He is faithful.
It requires both eyes and fingers of faith.
What “desires of your heart” are you longing for today, Pilgrim, that are still unmet? What inward craving is there within you that’s been there a long time and hasn’t subsided after several years, but only grown stronger?
Today’s Manna is a poignant, powerful reminder of the importance of faith with regards to God-inspired-and implanted desires within our hearts. And, it must be His faithfulness that sustains us when we’ve yet to receive what He’s promised to give.
In the case of Abraham and Sarah, they did receive the Promised Child, Isaac, even though it took 25 years to get him after God called them out (Gen. 12:1-4). And, even though they took things into their own hands 10 years into the journey and had a child by Hagar, their handmaid (Gen. 16:1ff), God still kept His Word and gave them a son whose name means “laughter.”
What they didn’t get to experience firsthand was seeing their lineage “as many as the stars of the sky and as innumerable as the grains of sand along the seashore.” Little did they realize that one day three groups—Jews, Christians and Islam—would trace their roots back to Abraham, their collective total alone today numbering somewhere between 3-4 billion.
But, what about us? What “desires of our hearts” (Ps. 37:4b) are still unclaimed or unrealized in our own lives?
Is it a lost loved one, for whom you’ve been praying for 20 years? Is it a wayward child or spouse, who’s “playing the prodigal” (Lk. 15:11-24) and all of your prayers seem to fall on deaf ears (theirs and God’s)?
Or, is it a job? Promotion? Business venture? Acquisition? A child? Marriage?
Regardless, God is faithful and His Promises are unchanging and true. If your “desire” is a God-implanted one, then keep on “delighting yourself in Him” (Ps. 37:4a). Cease fretting over “unanswered prayers.” Cease entertaining a spirit of discontent, discouragement or disillusionment. Cease viewing that lost relative or friend in their lost condition. . .reacting carnally against their negative words and deeds. . .and begin “seeing that which is not and calling it so” (Heb. 11:1)—i.e., relating to them as if they were already saved.
And, even if the Lord calls you home before that happens, by seeing this future estate “from afar. . .and being persuaded (convinced) of them. . .and embracing them as if they already existed,” God’s indescribable Peace will fill your heart (Phil. 4:7) and His unfailing Presence will be all you need as you journey toward that Celestial City. Hallelujah!!
By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated March 27, 2011