Monday, September 12, 2016

Looking Forward to September 18, 2016 -- Abraham is Promised many Descendants

This Sunday we will be celebrating the sacrament of Baptism.

The Scripture Reading for this week takes us into the story of Abraham: Genesis 12:1-3; 13:14-18; 15:1-6

The Sermon title is Descendants

Early Thoughts:  Poor Abraham. God calls him out of his settled life and challenges him to go to a new place with the promise of many descendants.  And yet as time passes there is not even ONE child.  To have many descendants you at least need to start with one child right?  Over and over again God promises descendants like the stars in the sky or the sand  on the ground, but still no child.

Can you blame Abraham for being a little worried or skeptical?

In the end, the story tells us, Abraham believed and trusted in the promise. And by his death he has multiple sons who become the founders of nations.

But the interim period was a little tough.

The story of Abraham is a story of trust. It is a story of promise. As the spiritual descendants of Abraham we also are challenged to have trust. We are challenged to trust that God is at work sometimes despite all the evidence.

As this week starts I am pondering if there is a link between Abraham desperate for a child so that his name will continue and so that there will be someone to care for him in his dotage and the present church's desperation to know if there will be a generation of faith to fill the pews after we are gone.  Who will be our descendants in the faith?

Do we trust that God is at work? Or do we think that it is all up to us to ensure the survival of this thing we call church? Or do we know that God is at work through us -- if we let ourselves discern and submit to how God is at work?

I think there is some linkage between Abraham's desperation and our own.  I wonder what that might mean for what we do next?

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