“Then Abraham took Ishmael his son and all those born in his house or bought with his money, every male among the men of Abraham’s house, and he circumcised the flesh of their foreskins that very day, as God had said to him. Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.” (Genesis 17:23–24, ESV)
Then Abraham took Ishmael his son and all those born in his house … that very day, as God had said to him. Abraham was ninety-nine years old. Excuses are a dime a dozen these days. In reality, they are the lies we tell ourselves when we simply are in rebellion to the plan before us.
Abraham, the Father of Faith, knows no such imperfection in his character. Once God declares His will and explains the direction has never changed, despite the living, breathing child of doubt standing beside him, Abraham pivots and obeys.
Character is seen in swiftness and boldness, in obedience and in cost. Surely, Abraham had to deal with his failure and his misjudgment as to how God would accomplish this daring plan – a child would be born from his body – and that was with Sarah! Wow!
Now, not willing to make a second mistake, he returns to his character – faith acts. And, without delay, “that very day, as God had said to him,” he circumcises his entire male household. There would be pain. There would be hesitancy in the heart of the normal man. Not in Abraham. Not even his age stood in the way of God’s plan … “Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.”
In the grand scheme of your life, can you say that you choose to obey over delay? Now, be serious, and write down five things you have done that God has told you to do … painful things … things that cut into you. Finances realigned to include generous giving? Scheduling reworked to make room for God? Relationships dropped or added? Rebellions abandoned? Disciplines added?
God longs to bless you. He blesses the person of faith. As Jesus has said, “According to your faith be it done to you.”(Matthew 9:29, ESV) Since faith acts, what do you need to do to demonstrate your faith today? Are you just one obedience away from God’s blessing?
Faith Filled Fridays hope to boost your trust in God and accelerate your daring and courage in everyday life. Dr. Matthew Lee Smith, Executive Director of Eagles In Leadership, writes each encouragement out of a heart that has known both great joy and great loss – his wife of 38 years, 5 months and 2 days was promoted to Heaven on November 11, 2017. Through every experience, God has proven Himself more than faithful and trustworthy. He welcomes your comments below.