* This article was first published in Women on the Journey devotional for women by Church Strengthening Ministries almost two decades ago! A friend messaged me that she recently got a copy and was delighted to read my writing. May this help some souls out there for whom the message may come timely. Shalom! 🙂
READ GENESIS 22
I have always wondered why God introduced Himself to Abraham as “The Lord Will Provide” when He spared Abraham from sacrificing his son, Isaac, to God. During my own painful and agonizing experiences, wherein the Lord wanted me to give up some things, I had to ask God to be my strength, my peace, my comfort, encouragement, or Sovereign Lord. But few were the times that I ever asked or expected God to provide an exchange for the things I had given up. Not that surrendering a little gave me the right to demand from God. Nevertheless, He has always proven Himself faithful to give me strength, comfort, and encouragement.
Last night was different.
A few years back, the one relationship I treasured the most had to end. I kept bargaining with God in prayer to give it back to me, just as He returned Isaac to Abraham. For years, I struggled with pain and disappointment, I went through circles and spirals and all jagged directions, until I came to the edge where I could no longer insist on holding on. I could no longer bargain and fight with God. I finally had to understand how it is to totally surrender.
Last night, God gave me not just strength, nor peace, nor a big, encouraging embrace. Instead, He gave me more. He enabled me to understand that He provided Abraham with more than a ram, and even more than his beloved son.
At the place of utmost surrender, He provides a Person – real, personal, and more satisfying than anything could ever be; a Person far greater than all I’ve ever longed for, so near and so warm.
At the place of utmost surrender, He provides me with Himself.
“So Abraham called that place The LORD Will Provide; and to this day it is said, ‘On the mountain of the LORD It will be provided.”
– Genesis 22:14