We continue to reflect on Abraham’s faith journey.
Abraham had made his own way down to Egypt just because he experienced hardship in the place where he was called by God. As far as he was concerned, Abraham made the right move – only God was not in it. As God was now out of the equation (albeit unintentionally) Abraham was left to fend for himself anyway he knew how to.
As he and all he had made their way to Egypt he started to plan ahead to ensure their safety. So he colluded with his wife to lie to the Egyptians about his relationship with her to guarantee his own safety seeing that Sara’s beauty could cause unwanted interest leading to a high level of risk to his life. It was as he feared. Sara’s beauty engendered interest among the men of Egypt leading to her being courted by none other than the king of Egypt himself who innocently believed what they had told him about their relationship which was not entirely true. For this same reason, Abraham found favour in the eyes of Pharaoh who secured his material prosperity on account of Sara.
What followed, however, would have been even more disastrous had God not graciously intervened to prevent it. God afflicted Pharaoh’s household with great plagues because of Sara leading Pharaoh to eventually return her to Abraham and expel them both out of his country too. Though Abraham was unceremoniously driven out of Egypt due to his own making, God’s gracious intervention saved him and his marriage because he was called by and carried God’s purposes in his life.
Nevertheless, what caused all this was Abraham’ unwarranted shift in position from where God had placed him.
Having realised his mistake Abraham now returned to the pace where he shifted from, the place where God had called him to. Genesis 13:3 – 4
And he journeyed on from the Negeb as far as Bethel to the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Ai, to the place where he had made an altar at the first.
Like Abraham, we too can unwittingly and unintentionally shift from the place God positions us in. This maybe a church, a ministry responsibility, a workplace or a neigbbourhood. As can be seen form the life of Abraham and countless saints in the Bible, God is never random about where He positions us in life. He does so with a purpose and strategically. Shifting from our positions without His direction always carries a price with it which we sometimes may have to carry with us for the rest of our lives. So let us stay put where He places us until such a time He deems it right to move us. Similarly, if we like Abraham have shifted from our God-ordained positions (wherever that may be), let us keep in mind that we serve a God of grace and He is ready and willing to give us a second chance – if we are willing to return to His plans and purposes for our lives.