Don’t you just love to gather wisdom from other parents who are grounded in the Word of God and actively parenting from that perspective? I do. That’s why I’m so thankful to welcome Emily Wickham to Intentional Parenting this month. She wrote us a sweet note to start, then you can catch all her contact/follow information at the end.
Dear Friends, I’m honored to share a portion from my Bible study manuscript, Pearls for My Daughter. This lesson includes a biblical account in my own words plus a letter to my daughter, Chloe. Thank you, Carole, for this opportunity, and thanks to all of you for reading this post. I pray this material will stir your hearts toward Jesus. In Christ’s love, Emily
Father, You are unstoppable. Please forgive us for periodically focusing on what we cannot do rather than what You can do. Thank You for providing many biblical examples of times You accomplished the impossible. Please remind us of these miracles when we struggle with doubt in impossible places. In Jesus’ mighty name, Amen.
Sarah’s Place (2067 B.C.)
Leaning in so she wouldn’t miss a word, Sarah listened. A mere tent door separated her from the visitor, who spoke to her husband, Abraham. There was no denying what she heard: he foretold the birth of her son. The man declared that in one year, Sarah would bear the child she longed for.
What? She laughed within, knowing her age defied his pledge. She and Abraham had waited for God to fulfill His 24-year-old promise. Now that she was about 90 years old—well past childbearing age—and her husband 99, why was this topic being addressed again?
After 10 years of waiting to become pregnant, Sarai had decided Abram (God changes their names later) should sleep with her maid, Hagar, and produce a child for her in that manner (see Genesis 16:2-3). Many people in their culture practiced this method of gaining offspring, so she’d reasoned it was the best option for them, too. Shortly thereafter, Ishmael had been born.
Now, about 14 years later, Sarah felt incredulous at the visitor’s words. Whether or not she recognized Him as the pre-incarnate Christ, she found it difficult to believe his proclamation. She laughed silently, yet the LORD perceived this and asked Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh, saying, ‘Shall I indeed bear a child, when I am so old?’” (Genesis 18:13). He followed His question with an unforgettable statement meant to counteract Sarah’s skepticism. “Is anything too difficult for the LORD?” (Genesis 18:14).
Indeed, God can accomplish anything. He. Is. Able. Sarah’s age and lack of childbearing ability posed no obstacle for Him. She bore Isaac one year later just as the LORD articulated.
In a more magnificent display, God accomplished our salvation through the death and resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ. This occurred thousands of years after God cursed the serpent, saying, “He shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise him on the heel” (Genesis 3:15). Despite the lengthy interval between the word spoken and the word fulfilled, God kept His promise, and we’re the privileged recipients.
I’ve never faced an impossible situation like becoming pregnant after menopause, yet many times I’ve felt certain relationships would never change. Hurtful behaviors and strong personalities cause me to withdraw, and often I’ve allowed fear to dictate my responses rather than God’s love. Unable to see beyond the negativity and pain, I’ve endured difficult relationships instead of pursuing improvement.
My relationship with my mom, your Oma, sort of fits this category. When I was in my late teens or early twenties, I wished for another mother. It shames and grieves me to share that, but it’s true. I longed for a mom I could talk heart-to-heart with—one who would understand the deepest part of me. Yet my mom and I never achieved that type of relationship. She loved me, but she remained too broken and scarred from her childhood to offer what I yearned for.
God taught me a valuable lesson, however, as I matured. He enabled me to release those expectations and accept Oma just as she was. No one’s perfect, and God called me to love her instead of hoping for her to change. He could have healed her childhood baggage completely, which would have enhanced our mother-daughter relationship immensely. Yet He chose to change me instead. God is able, and He decided to fulfill His plan differently than I anticipated. “But now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love” (1 Corinthians 13:13).
Whatever circumstance we face—whether it’s a physical limitation, a relational issue, or anything else—God is able. We must never forfeit this truth. I pray you, my dear daughter, will always carry this confidence into every situation.
What impossible place do you face today, and how do you see God working in it?
God is able to do what seems impossible—in Bible times and in your life today. Believe it for #IntentionalParenting. A guest post from @emilywickhamPH via @Carole_Sparks. #AllThingsArePossible (click to tweet)
Carole here. Don’t you just love Emily’s storytelling and connection to our lives? How are you encouraged by this? When have you wanted something for a long, long time and how did God meet or change that desire? Emily and I would both love to hear from you in the comments below!
Emily Wickham gently reaches women’s hearts as a devotional writer for LifeWay’s Journey Magazine and as a teacher at Embrace Bible Study Community. Passionate about stirring hearts toward Jesus, she values every writing and speaking opportunity. Emily blogs regularly at www.proclaiminghimtowomen.com, and she shares weekly Devotions for Women broadcasts via YouTube. An author and speaker, wife of 28+ years, and mom of four, Emily enjoys life with her family in North Carolina.