A different look at every day issues.

Ram in the Thicket

We have all measured the cost of our own generosity. In our minds, we think, “I can afford this . . . or at least recover shortly.” Isn’t that the way human nature calculates seeming acts of sacrifice?
Abraham was asked by God to give Isaac as an offering upon a mountain. Isaac was God’s fulfillment of a promise made long ago to a barren couple well into their final years. Now, God told Abraham to give him back.
Imagine with me the untold devastation the couple felt when everything they had ever hoped for and prayed for was now being recalled.

I can see the knife being held in his hand just as it ascends before the plunge. I can see the young boy on the stack of stones being used as an altar. I can see the pain in the father’s eyes as tears flow down his cheeks. But, like I said, God provided a ram to be the sacrifice. He wanted to know what was in Abraham’s heart. Would he cling to the blessing of a child in his old age or would he honor God’s directive?

Of course, we know the biblical narrative behind the directive. It was a test. Abraham passed. The boy and his father returned home to a very relieved mother.

Isaac’s father was provided a ram in the thicket—just in time!

God does ask things of us in order to test and stretch our faith. He knows what’s ahead and has promised to always keep us in the hollow of his hand. However, during the test we often feel abandoned and left to our own calculations. God’s reason for the test is to take us to the next level in our trusting him and in his demonstration of provision.

What is He asking of you? Has he asked something that your calculations cannot justify? Your part is to trust him. His part is to provide a ram in the thicket—just in time. What he placed in your heart, he will accomplish – with room to spare.

Jim Beaird


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May I paint your picture for our journal at the Christian Counselling Center in Harare Zimbabwe? Please? Thank you, Brenda Smith


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