Text: Romans 4:16-25
Theme: We can and should trust God’s promises.
Key verses: “So the promise is received by faith. It is given as a free gift. And we are all certain to receive it…if we have faith like Abraham’s….That is what the Scriptures mean when God told him, ‘I have made you the father of many nations.’ This happened because Abraham believed in the God who brings the dead back to life and who creates new things out of nothing. Even when there was no reason to hope–Abraham kept hoping…” (v. 16-18). “Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises. And because of Abraham’s faith, God counted him as righteous” (v. 20-22).
What God said to me: Good morning! That’s the first thing I want to say to you. Don’t miss how good this morning is and don’t forget how good the One who made this morning is to you. I am the ultimate Promise-keeper. I always do exactly what I say I will. You know this, Dwayne. I planted you in the rich soil of that little church in Owens Cross Roads, Alabama and gave you a godly mom and grandmom who taught you early in life that you can trust me. You saw it lived out in front of you. You’ve been learning to lean on me since you were a child. As the old hymn says, you’ve been “standing on the promises” of God your Savior for a long time. But then, why do you find it so hard to believe me now? Have I not proven myself to you? You used to passionately sing, “Jesus, Jesus, how I trust You. How I’ve proved You ‘ore and ‘ore.” In that same chorus you have prayed many times, “Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus, oh for grace to trust You more.” Abraham never wavered in believing me. And think about what I promised him, to be the father of nations. Consider his circumstances: he was nearly 100, his wife was barren, and he wasn’t even the father of one child, much less many nations of children. Where is the logic in that? If anyone had an excuse to waver in their faith, Abraham did. Dwayne, have I not proven myself to you many more times since those early days when you sang that song? Am I not able to do exactly what I have promised you I would do in your life? Remember what I spoke to you on those backroads of Arab 8 years ago, how you would impact thousands of worship leaders around the world? Why do you doubt that? Why do you work so hard in your own strength to try to help me with that? I have chosen the nothings of this world to confound the wise. Little is much when I am in it. Labor not for wealth or fame. There’s a crown and you will win it, if you go in Jesus’ name.
What I said to God: Wow, wow. What an encouraging and convicting word to me today, Lord. Thank You for meeting with me and speaking so clearly to my heart. Forgive me for ever doubting You. Forgive me for trying to help You out and for worrying about our future and how we’re going to “break through” to expand our influence and ministry. That is all up to You. All I can do is listen and obey, and guard my own heart from sin and self. Oh for grace to trust You more.