God had promised Abram that He would make Abram the father of a great nation. Abram was promised that his descendants would be innumerable. Yet at 85 years of age, he still had no offspring. It’s pretty obvious this wasn’t for lack of trying.
By the time we get to the desperate attempt in chapter 16 of Genesis we can probably assume safely that Abram and Sarai had tried everything they could think of. Sarai was probably on a first name basis with the local herbalist.
None of their efforts produced results.
“Desperate times call for desperate measures,” the saying goes.
Sarai gave her servant to Abram to sleep with and have a child through. Abram consented and Sarai’s servant became pregnant. The result was not blessing, but a whole world of hurt for Abram, his family and his descendants.
What has God called you to? What has He said He wants to do through you? How far are you willing to go to do this? Have you done everything you can think of? Will you take matters into your own hands?
God called me to this town almost four years ago to plant a church. I’ve read the books, done the studies, attended the seminars and conferences, used the methods etc. Oddly enough I seem to have fewer people now that when I started. The small rural town I live and minister in has been hit incredibly hard by the current ecconomic situation. Things look bleak.
Desperate times call for dedicated faith.
I have not seen the realization of God’s call and promise. I have seen hard work, struggle, heartache and more gray hair. These past four years have also been a time of incredible personal growth.
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.
I have done just about everything I can think of to do. It is Christ, though, who ultimately plants a church. That He has called me to be His means of grace is an honor (albeit a painful one often).
Yes, we are to do all we can, but not so far as to take matters into our own hands. How do you know where that line in the sand is? For that we must abide in Christ. Do not neglect personal study, devotion & prayer. Do not neglect family devotion, study & prayer. Do not neglect meeting with other believers and worshiping God in communion. Do not neglect to find a mentor (or mentors) and someone who can hold you accountable.
We must wait on the Lord.
By all means, do everything you can do. Give God everything you have. Understand, however, that it is God who causes growth. Trust Him for the results.