Tuesday, April 10, 2018

From Strength to Strength...Isaac...from Clarity to Blindness

 From a place of open spaces and clear sight…..to bitterness and the inability to see…

What happened?
Dear Reader,

In last month’s blog we observed Isaac, son of Abraham, settling in Gerar…sowing seed, cultivating land and living “life” around the well of “open spaces.”  We took note of his slow and steady activity, reaping a hundred-fold in one year.  We pondered what that could mean for us and our year ahead.
Now in this blog we will see Isaac migrating approximately twenty-five miles south to a place called Beersheba:

“And the Lord appeared to him the same night and said, ‘I am the God of Abraham your father.  Fear not, for I am with you and will bless you and multiply your offspring for my servant Abraham’s sake.  So he built an altar there and called upon the name of the Lord and pitched his tent there.  And there Isaac’s servants dug a well.”  Genesis 26:23-25

We don’t know how much time had passed, but it appears in Beersheba worship was still a priority for him.  We also see with the pitching of his tent, that he had decided to settle there.  For Isaac, the spaces don’t seem to be quite so open however.  Verses 26-31 reveal negotiations with warring tribes in that area and ultimately, the signing of a covenant of peace…politically and militarily.
“In the morning they rose early and exchanged oaths.  And Isaac sent them on their way, and they departed from him in peace.”  Genesis 26:31

So time was passing.  The days seem to have been full.  God had told him not to fear.  God had promised to bless him and multiply his offspring.
Yet, incredibly, only three verses later the Scripture reveals that his one son’s intermarriage with a woman from one of these tribes…“made life bitter for Isaac and Rebekah.”
What happened?
What happened to the man who, as a lad had demonstrated clear vision and a priority of seeking God’s choice for his life? 

”And Isaac went out to meditate in the field toward evening.  And he lifted up his eyes and saw, and behold, there were camels coming.  And Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she dismounted from the camel…” Genesis 24:63-65

Yet…“When Isaac was old…his eyes were dim so that he could not see…”  Genesis 27:1

How did he become a man of years experiencing bitterness and loss of vision?      

How did this happen?  When did it happen?

Dear Readers, as you spend more time immersed in this character study, perhaps you could consider:

Where are you in your life right now? 

Where are you digging your wells?  Where are you pitching your tents?  What are your priorities?

When are you taking time to walk in the field, to meditate, to seek His choices?

How are you spending God’s “hundred-fold” resources?

How are you spending God’s time?

And what about the year still ahead?  Are you still in Gerar, or are you heading toward Beersheba?

Which is better?  Which is best? 

Dear Reader,

2018 is still young.  Take time to listen and hear what Jesus says.  Follow Him. 
“If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also.  If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.” John 12:26

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