Archive for the ‘Abraham’ Category

January 28th, 2015

Leaving a Legacy

“And the LORD appeared to him the same night and said, ‘I am the God of Abraham your father. Fear not, for I am with you and will bless you and multiply your offspring for my servant Abraham’s sake.’ So he built an altar there and called upon the name of the LORD and pitched his tent there. And there Isaac’s servants dug a well.” Genesis 26:24-25 (ESV)

What kind of impact will your life make on the next generation? What is going to outlive you and outlast you? What deposits are you making into the next generation? In order to leave a legacy, you must live a legacy.

Abraham and Sarah lived out their faith in God before their son, Isaac. They were intentional about handing down the faith and leaving a legacy. Sarah died and was buried. Abraham died years later and was buried in the cave of Machpelah with Sarah.

How did their faith impact Isaac’s life? God graciously appeared to Isaac just as He had appeared to Abraham. God affirmed Isaac with His abiding presence and promised to bless him and multiply his offspring for Abraham’s sake. Did you catch that? The blessing from God was in honor of Abraham, for Abraham’s sake. Isaac responded to this encounter of God by building an altar there and calling upon the name of the Lord. Isaac continued the faith that Abraham and Sarah had modeled before him.

What kind of legacy will you leave? Will those closest to you continue in the faith because of the faith you lived out during your time on the earth? Leave a legacy by living a legacy. Worship God privately and publicly. Serve the Lord with passion and enthusiasm. Be an irresistible influence for the Lord and impact the next generation.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, January 28th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, Isaac, Legacy.
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January 27th, 2015

Jehovah Jireh

“And Isaac said to his father Abraham, ‘My father!’ And he said, ‘Here I am, my son.’ He said, ‘Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?’ Abraham said, ‘God will provide for himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.’ So they went both of them together.” Genesis 22:7-8 (ESV)

Abraham demonstrated absolute loyalty and devotion to God by his willingness to sacrifice his promised son. Abraham and Sarah were beyond child bearing years. Yet, God provided the miracle of Isaac’s conception. Now God is asking Abraham to sacrifice that which was promised to him.

  • “And Abraham lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him was a ram, caught in a thicket by his horns. And Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt offering instead of his son.” Gen 22:13 (ESV)

Is there anything in your life that takes priority over your relationship with Jesus? Are there any allurements sifting your affection away from your devotion to Christ? Do you have an Isaac in your life that you are unwilling to sacrifice?

What is standing in the way of your realization of unbroken fellowship with God? What is taking the number one place of prominence in your life which is reserved for God? Whatever that item, ambition, or person is may be your Isaac.

Could it be that God wants you to sacrifice that Isaac in your life to enable God to have top priority in your life? God wants first place in your daily walk. God wants to be the supreme object of your energy and affection. He not only deserves it, but He demands it.

Spend a few moments taking inventory of your current priorities and identify what is preventing God from being your top priority.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, January 27th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, God's Provision, Obedience.
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January 26th, 2015

God’s Grace

“And the child grew and was weaned. And Abraham made a great feast on the day that Isaac was weaned. But Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, laughing. So she said to Abraham, ‘Cast out this slave woman with her son, for the son of this slave woman shall not be heir with my son Isaac.’” Genesis 21:8-10 (ESV)

Shortcuts in life can generate adverse consequences. Instead of waiting on God’s timing to produce offspring, Abraham and Sarah took a shortcut by utilizing Sarah’s servant, Hagar. “And Sarai said to Abram, ‘Behold now, the LORD has prevented me from bearing children. Go in to my servant; it may be that I shall obtain children by her.’ And Abram listened to the voice of Sarai” (Gen 16:2 ESV). Sarah got what she wanted, but later didn’t want what she got!

Abraham had to make the difficult decision to send Hagar and Ishmael on their way in order to keep marital peace with Sarah. Hagar finds herself in desperation and ready to give up her life and the life of her son, Ishmael, as they wander in the wilderness of Beersheba. She placed Ishmael under a bush anticipating his death as well as her own. Then God intervened:

  • “Then God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water. And she went and filled the skin with water and gave the boy a drink. And God was with the boy, and he grew up. He lived in the wilderness and became an expert with the bow. He lived in the wilderness of Paran, and his mother took a wife for him from the land of Egypt.” Gen 21:19-21 (ESV)

God’s grace always matches the desperation of our need. God has the final say even in the darkest of moments. When life gets messy, don’t hesitate to turn to the Master! God’s grace is more than enough!

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, January 26th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, Compassion, Grace.
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January 25th, 2015

God’s Miracle

“The LORD said, ‘I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife shall have a son.’ And Sarah was listening at the tent door behind him. Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in years. The way of women had ceased to be with Sarah.” Genesis 18:10-11 (ESV)

Is the level of your faith determined by the intensity and severity of your circumstances or by the One in whom you are placing your faith? Abraham and Sarah’s situation was desperate and seemingly impossible. Abraham was one hundred years old and Sarah was ninety years old and barren.

Don’t miss the blessing behind “even when.” Even when Abraham was past age and Sarah was barren, God enabled them to become parents because Abraham considered God faithful. God had already made the promise of blessing Abraham with offspring (Gen. 12:2-3).

  • “By faith Sarah herself received power to conceive, even when she was past the age, since she considered him faithful who had promised.” Heb. 11:11 (ESV)
  • “Therefore from one man, and him as good as dead, were born descendants as many as the stars of heaven and as many as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore.” Heb. 11:12 (ESV)

Instead of focusing on your circumstances, focus on the faithfulness of God. You can bring your burdens to the Lord with openness and transparency. You can bear your soul before the Lord as you navigate the terrain of a fallen world. God formed you and fashioned you for His glory. Your circumstances will not derail the purposes of God from being fulfilled in your life. Trust God to demonstrate His faithfulness to you. Be sensitive to God’s activity today in the midst of your circumstances.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, January 25th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, Miracle, Sarah.
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January 24th, 2015

God’s Provision

“Now the LORD said to Abram, ‘Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.’” Genesis 12:1-3 (ESV)

Without trust, there is no authentic relationship. Relationships are built on the foundation of trust. As you know, to be trusted one must be trustworthy. Without question, God is worthy of our trust. He is holy, righteous, immutable, eternal, and perfect. God honors His Word. God keeps His promises. God has impeccable timing and matchless integrity.

When God revealed Himself to Abram, the relationship of trust was demonstrated. God commanded Abram to leave his comfort zone and to embrace the unknown. God promised to bless Abram and to make Abram a blessing. At this time, Abram was seventy-five years old and he and Sarai had no children. Even though God’s promise did not make logical sense in that Sarai was well along in years and childless, Abram took God at His Word and obeyed Him.

What are you doing with what God has said to you? Have you obeyed what you already know? God blesses obedience. When you obey God, you come to know God by experience. You will discover God’s will as you obey God’s will. Walk in the light God gives you and watch to see how God unveils the next step that He wants you to take. As you obey, God will show you the way.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, January 24th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, God's Provision, Obedience.
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January 21st, 2014

Journey of Faith

“By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going.” Hebrews 11:8 (ESV)

Is it possible to obey God and not know where you are going? God told Abraham to leave and go to a place that God would show him and Abraham went (Gen. 12:1-4). Even though he didn’t know where he was going, by faith Abraham obeyed God. He was willing to take God at His word and launch into the unknown and the unfamiliar.

Sometimes God will unveil the details of your journey and at other times God will simply ask you to step out and trust Him with the details. You may not be able to see very far into the future God has for you. But, you can trust God every step of the way. Will you obey what God has already revealed to you? Obey and go based on what you know, then God will show you what’s next. Live from faith to faith. Walking with God is like walking down a trail in the woods at night with a flashlight. You can only see a few feet in front of you, but as you move forward the light illuminates a portion of the path that was not visible to you. As you walk with God, He illuminates the path He wants you to take.

God will not mislead you. Walk closely to Him and listen for the echo of His whisper. Spend time in His Word and in prayer. Seek godly counsel from a person who walks in the Spirit and who cares about you and your future. God will speak through His word, through circumstances, and through other believers as you seek His next step for your life.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, January 21st, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, Faith, Journey.
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January 20th, 2014

Being God’s Conduit of Blessing

“And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, ‘In you shall all the nations be blessed.’ So then, those who are of faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.” Galatians 3:8-9 (ESV)

The gospel begins with God. God is the Creator of life and the initiator of reconciliation. The grace of God has been poured out on us. God is the lover who persistently and consistently seeks to restore those who have fallen. God’s love is unconditional and His mercy is unleashed to redeem us.

God chose to announce the gospel in advance to Abraham. God enabled Abraham to become a conduit of the blessing God has for all nations. Abraham was blessed by God to be a blessing to all people groups. As a man of faith, Abraham believed God.

God blesses you with salvation so that you can be a blessing to all nations. God redeemed you so that you can join Him in bringing redemption to all people groups on our planet. God’s abundant love and forgiveness is available to all. Will you be a conduit of God’s blessing?

You can pray. You can give. You can go. You can radiate God’s love through your conversation and your conduct. You can join God in His redemptive activity by seizing every opportunity God gives you to make Jesus known.

Begin viewing people through the lens of the gospel. As a recipient of the gospel blessing, commit to share your salvation story with others. Let the light of God’s love shine through your life. Be willing to go wherever God wants you to go. Be willing to do whatever God wants you to do. Place your “yes” on the altar and say, “Lord, I’m yours!”

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, January 20th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, Blessing, Covenant.
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January 19th, 2014

Seeing the Unseen

“And behold, the word of the Lord came to him: ‘This man shall not be your heir; your very own son shall be your heir.’ And he brought him outside and said, ‘Look toward heaven, and number the stars, if you are able to number them.’ Then he said to him,’So shall your offspring be.’” Genesis 15:4-5 (ESV)

Sometimes life can be foggy. You try to make sense out of what you don’t know and out of what you can’t see. You look back to review where you have been and identify the spiritual markers in your past. Being confident of God’s faithfulness, you look into the fog knowing that God is up to something.

Abraham was in one of those foggy seasons where his current reality just didn’t make sense. He was past age and Sarah was barren, yet God promised to make Abraham into a great nation. In God’s perfect timing, the fog began to lift as He took Abraham outside to look up at the heavens and count the stars. Then God promised that Abraham’s offspring would be a numerous as the stars.

As you walk with God, you will go through seasons of uncertainty and seasons of silence. When that happens, recapture that last thing God said to you and obey Him. Walk in the light God gives you until He shows you the next step He has for you. In God’s perfect timing, the fog will lift and you will be able to see clearly.

Trust God to build the bridges that He wants you to cross and to open the doors that He wants you to walk through. Don’t be so preoccupied with the destination that you bypass the beauty of experiencing God in the journey. Discover the joy of the journey.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, January 19th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, Covenant, Faith.
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January 18th, 2014

Taking the Next Step

“Now the Lord said to Abram, ‘Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you.’” Genesis 12:1 (ESV)

What is keeping you from obeying God? Do you fear the unknown? Are you uncomfortable making a move without having more information? Maybe God has chosen to limit His revelation to match your obedience. Once you obey what He has already said, then He will show you the next step.

  • “So Abram went, as the Lord had told him, and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran.”  Gen. 12:4 (ESV)

Abram took God at His word! He simply obeyed God. God told Abram to leave and go to a land that He would show him. Guess what? Abram left, as the Lord told him. He obeyed.

You can never go wrong obeying God. His way is always the best way. Even when it doesn’t make sense or seem remotely logical, God’s way is the right way. If you are confused about your next step, just obey what He has already said. Start there!

Identify what you are wrestling with right now? What is keeping you from taking the next step? Place that fear or frustration before the Lord in prayer and see how He helps you take the next step. You can trust God with your present circumstances and your future hopes and dreams.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, January 18th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, Faith, Obedience.
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September 23rd, 2013

Focus Your Faith

“By faith Abraham, even though he was past age–and Sarah herself was barren–was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise.” Hebrews 11:11 (NIV)

Is the level of your faith determined by the intensity and severity of your circumstances or by the One in whom you are placing your faith? Abraham and Sarah’s situation was desperate and seemingly impossible. Abraham was 100 years old and Sarah was ninety years old and barren.

Don’t miss the blessing behind “even though.” Even though Abraham was past age and Sarah was barren, God enabled them to become parents because Abraham considered God faithful. God had already made the promise of blessing Abraham with offspring (Gen. 12:2-3). Abraham believed God!

  • “And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.” Heb. 11:12 (NIV)
  • “Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall.” Ps. 55:22 (NIV)

Instead of focusing on your circumstances, focus on the faithfulness of God. You can bring your burdens to the Lord with openness and transparency. You can bear your soul before the Lord as you navigate the terrain of a fallen world. God formed you and fashioned you for His glory. Your circumstances will not derail the purposes of God from being fulfilled in your life. Trust God to demonstrate His faithfulness to you. Be sensitive to God’s activity today in the midst of your circumstances.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, September 23rd, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Abraham, Circumstances, Faithfulness of God.
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