By Robert Thomas
In a few months, I’ll be moving out of my parent’s house to Texas. I’ve lived at home for 24 years. My parents supported me throughout that time. Not only will I be moving out, but I’ll be moving to a place where I’ll know hardly anyone.
Now for the first time in my life, I’ll be on my own.
When I started at Central New Mexico Community College, I was nervous. I was going from eight plus years of homeschooling to a public school experience. After a while, my nerves were calmed by the fact that I had been prepared for this next step, and I was going to be ok. However, the same thing happened when I transferred to the University of New Mexico. But once again, given some time, I was able to adjust and succeed in my studies.
The same nerves have struck me in many situations in my life. When I started my first job, when I moved to a new job, when I travelled overseas for the first time, when I preached my first sermon. People call me high-strung. I would normally disagree, but looking back, I can see why they say that. My nerves get the best of me more often than I choose to admit. With this move to Texas looming ahead, I’ve been thinking about my nerves a lot lately.
I’ve also been thinking a lot about Abraham. Read Genesis 12: 1- 9 NIV
I cannot imagine what this guy went through when he first encountered God. I wonder what it was like. Was it a voice booming from heaven? “ABRAM, GO FORTH FROM YOUR COUNTRY.” Or maybe God came to him in a dream, speaking plainly. We read in the Bible about a still, small voice speaking to Elijah. Maybe it was similar to that. At any rate, Abram heard the message of God, and obeyed, leaving behind everything he knew in order to follow a God he’d never met, to a place he’d never been, in promise of a miracle. What a journey of faith this man experienced.
Abraham, who was originally called Abram, is remembered for his faith in God, but we cannot overemphasize the role of the man in this story. God was with him every step of the way, protecting Abraham and his wife when they were in trouble, and bolstering Abraham’s faith when he struggled. In the Bible, we not only see the faithfulness of Abraham as he followed God’s commands, we see the constant presence of God in his life. Surely, without God’s help, this journey would have been even more difficult than it already was. These people needed God every step of their walk, and God was there to meet them.
I think about the new experiences I’ve encountered in my personal life, and I know there are hundreds more new things God has in store for my future. Currently, I’m standing on the cusp of my own journey of faith, just like Abraham. At first, this makes me afraid; how can I be sure I’ll be ready for what comes next? What if everything doesn’t turn out ok? But the more I look at the past, the more I remember the times I spent in prayer, totally honest with God. I remember telling Him how unprepared I felt, how much I needed Him, and how much I was relying on Him.
Our Faithful God responded with peace and provision every time.
During times of trouble and fear in my life, there’s a verse I reflect on to remind me of God’s sovereignty. You could say this is one of the verses I keep in my “satchel”, to carry with me at all times. May this verse similarly comfort you during hard times.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”
The Lord Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.