“And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.”

Hebrews 6:15

It’s one thing to wait; it’s another thing to “wait patiently” (Ps. 40:1).

Abram was 75-years-old when God called him to “go without knowing where he was going” (Gen. 12:4; Heb. 11:8).  And, even though he was “called the Friend of God” (James 2:23b)… “believed God and it was imputed unto him for righteousness—i.e., placed in God’s righteous assets’ column” (v.23a). . .he still possessed imperfect faith. . .twice having Sarai lie about their relationship (Gen. 12:9-20; 20:1-18) and “hearkening to Sarai’s voice” (16:2) instead of listening only to God’s Voice. . .which resulted in the birth of Ishmael by Hagar, whose descendants wage war against Isaac’s lineage until this day (16:11-12).

Again, it was not a perfect faith; but it was “an enduring faith.”

For 24 years he did not receive the Promise from God.  After having Ishmael, it seems that somehow he thought HE (Ishmael) was the promised child—for later on he said “O that Ishmael might live before You”—i.e., “Why, isn’t Ishmael ‘the one’?  Shall a son be born to someone who’s 100-years-old and his wife’s already 90-years-old?” (17:17-18).

Yet, God was patient with this patriarch.  And, He reminded him of His original Promise and finally fleshed out His Plan by telling him the name of the Promised Child (17:19-21).

Do you see it, Pilgrim?  Do you see it?

For 24 years Abraham didn’t know the Promised Child’s name would be Isaac.  For 13 years after Ishmael’s birth he continued living by faith, but not in God’s “perfect” will.  Thus, for him God’s Plan and Promise were “progressive revelation” even as they are for us.

None of us know what tomorrow holds (Prov. 27:1); but, we do know Who holds it.

None of us know all that God’s Plan and Promise hold for us; yet, we know it is good (Jer. 29:11).

None of us know what “bumps” lie ahead of us in the road. . .how many turns, hills and valleys we’ll go through. . .how many heartaches and sorrows we’ll have to endure. . .but we do know God is faithful (I Cor. 10:13), His Grace is sufficient (II Cor. 12:9-10) and our Faithful Friend (Jesus) will always be there (Mt. 28:20b; Ps. 46:1; Heb. 13:5b).  Hallelujah!!

“Patient endurance.”

Isn’t that what we need in these days of increased pressures?  Don’t we need His Grace to “stay the course” and “stay under the load” when it’d be so easy to wave the white flag of surrender and chuck it all?

Yes, “patient endurance.”

“Laying aside every weight and any sin that easily trips us up. . .running patiently the Race that is SET before us… fighting the good fight. . .running until the Finish Line. . .keeping the Faith. . .all because we keep our eyes focused—yea, ‘fixed’—upon Jesus, the Author and Finisher/Perfecter of our faith” (Heb. 12:1-2; II Tim. 4:7).  Don’t give up, Pilgrim; look up, instead.  The Finish Line is in sight—and Victory is assured.  Amen and amen.  Glory!!

By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated February 8, 2011

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