Did you know that the calling to go to the land of Canaan did not start with Abraham? The Lord called Abraham (then still called Abram) to go to the Promised Land while he was living in Haran. But how did Abraham, who originally came from Ur of the Chaldeans, come to live in Haran? Abraham lived in Haran because that’s where his father, Terah, brought him.
Genesis 11:31 explains how Terah left Ur of the Chaldeans and set out for Canaan. But he never made it there. He stopped half-way, and settled in Haran. Terah never set foot in Canaan, despite the fact that this was his intended destination. Scripture does not give any comments on why Terah stopped half-way, or how God felt about this. But for me this story, recorded in the Bible, stands as a sobering example to us all.
It is possible for all of us to stop half-way in the journey that God has called us to. It is easy to give up, to settle, and to congratulate ourselves for leaving in the first place. Yet God calls us on. The journey to become a true disciple, to have a more fully surrendered heart, to be continually changed into His likeness, is not a quick and easy process by any means. In fact, it can sometimes feel like a long and arduous journey.
The Bible is full of stories of God’s people being prepared over long periods of time to walk in their God-given calling. I wonder how many times guys like Joseph, Moses, Abraham and David wanted to give up. It was not easy for them being called by God. Each of them, and many others, went through long years of hardship. But thankfully, none of them gave up and stopped half-way.
Now, what about us? Do we have promises from God, either personal words or biblical promises, which have yet to be fulfilled? I’m sure we all do. And if so, are we still keeping on the journey, or have we been tempted to stop half-way? My suggestion for today is that we take the example of Abraham, rather than that of his father Terah. Let us keep going, because God is with us, and His promises will be fulfilled in our lives if we keep on keeping on.
Prayer: Father in heaven, please help me to never give up. Encourage me, and help me persevere, especially when I am tempted to stop half-way. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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