“Hard tests have huge effects. When God is up to something hard, God is up to something big. Our hardest tests involve our dearest loves. The harder the test, the further-reaching the ramifications.” ~~ Beth Moore.
“Some time later, God tested Abraham’s faith. “Abraham!” God called.“Yes,” he replied. “Here I am.” “Take your son, your only son, whom you love, Isaac … and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I will tell you. … Then the angel of the Lord called again to Abraham from heaven. “This is what the Lord says: Because you have obeyed me and have not withheld even your son, your only son, I swear by my own name that I will certainly bless you. And through your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed—all because you have obeyed me.” Genesis 22.
Simply put, it is in obedience that we find blessing. Oh yes – that’s the Sunday School answer for sure! If God asked me to buckle up my firstborn and take a trip to the mountain so that he would die, I’m pretty sure I would be checking out all other options, sure that I had not heard correctly. But not Abraham. You see, Abraham had already believed God in the promise and the covenant God had given him. He and God had a history — one where Abraham had seen God’s faithfulness to His promise. His first response when God asked him to offer his only son was one of obedience, to the point of setting out up the mountain, placing his son on the altar, and raising the knife. And in that moment, Abraham demonstrated complete obedience and faith. It was on the heights of the mountain that Abraham’s heart was at the lowest posture — a place of complete surrender.
There are so many lessons in this story. A timely principle in particular for us as parents is that Abraham was blessed because he did not withhold his son from God. His devotion to his God was paramount to his devotion to his son. When we have a history with God, we are able to make decisions regarding our children based on our obedience to God. When we attach ourselves to God, we are able to securely and bravely raise our kids to live the same faith. As parents, it is only when we surrender that which we love most in complete surrender to God, that we find blessing and legacy. On this mountain, Abraham found both. Leave a legacy of obedience!