Monday Memo 1156: The Mother of Faith

In the story of Abraham and Sarah, Abraham gets most of the attention for his faith, but he wasn't alone in his faith journey:

And by faith even Sarah, who was past childbearing age, was enabled to bear children because she considered him faithful who had made the promise (Hebrews 11:11).

Another translation says it this way: "She believed that God would keep his promise" (NLT). Sarah was trusting God right along with Abraham and together they produced faith fruit that has been set forth as a model for all to follow down through the ages.

In this series, "Never Too Old for Purpose," we're looking at people in the Bible who were fulfilling their purpose into their later years, which is why we have come to Sarah's story this week. Sarah's faith journey wasn't perfect and yours doesn't have to be either:

“Where is your wife Sarah?” they asked him.“There, in the tent,” he said. Then one of them said, “I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife will have a son.” Now Sarah was listening at the entrance to the tent, which was behind him. Abraham and Sarah were already very old, and Sarah was past the age of childbearing. So Sarah laughed to herself as she thought, “After I am worn out and my lord is old, will I now have this pleasure?" Then the Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Will I really have a child, now that I am old?' Is anything too hard for the Lord? I will return to you at the appointed time next year, and Sarah will have a son.” Sarah was afraid, so she lied and said, “I did not laugh.” But he said, “Yes, you did laugh" (Genesis 18:9-15).

What do we learn about Sarah in this passage? At first, her thinking wasn't consistent with faith thinking. She was old and assumed that there were certain things she could not do at her age, and one of them was having a baby. She scoffed at such an idea, but then found out that God knew her thoughts and was ready to reveal them as a sign of His promise—not to condemn her but to reveal His power. Then Sarah lied, denying she had laughed at all, but God was revealing that He could not lie.

The beauty of the story is that none of Sarah's frailties, either physical or mental, disqualified her from receiving the promise. Hebrews 11 doesn't focus on her weakness or doubt; it endorses her faith. And that's good news for you and me, for while God is intimately acquainted with our thoughts and actions, He's still willing to use us—as long we allow our faith and not our doubt to have the last word.

About what have you said, "I'm too old"? Where have you laughed at the thought of doing something for God that you wanted to do when you were young, but have disqualified yourself due to your age? And if you're young, do you have the thought that when you're old, you (and others) are pretty much impotent where purpose and serving God are concerned?

If Abraham is the father of faith, I guess that makes Sarah the mother of it. Determine to follow both of their examples throughout your life and that will ensure that you, like they did, will have live a life of purposeful faith all the days God allows you to have. Have a blessed week!



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