Have you ever felt like God whispered a promise into your heart?
I keep thinking about teenage Mary and the dramatic promise Gabriel gave her, that she would conceive through the Holy Spirit and the child growing inside her would be called Son of God.
Whether it is a very personal promise or a prophetic word over a whole community or nation, there are things I am hoping for and praying for–things I believe God promised to do. Sometimes the gap between God’s given promise and its actual fulfillment can feel like a chasm as wide as the Grand Canyon.
Standing on one side of the canyon with the promise in our hearts, we stare across the distance at the yet-to-come fulfillment. Initially our hearts burst with anticipation and joy that God has affirmed our heart’s desire. But as time passes and we still don’t see the promise come to fruition, we become vulnerable to despair. Our petitions fade away and sometimes bitterness grows in their place. Or perhaps we turn on our ourselves thinking that we have not prayed enough, have not been holy enough and not done enough to earn the fulfillment of the promises of God.
As you read this today, I hope you will take a deep breath and allow hope to seep back into your heart. Fight off every voice of condemnation and failure over those tender promises and whether or not you deserve them. God’s gifts are not earned–they are granted out of His goodness. Quite often they require faith but not striving.
2 Corinthians 1:20 declares that God’s promises are “yes” in Christ. If you read carefully, the verse continues to explain our role.
For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God. ~2 Corinthians 1:20 (NIV)
The second half of the verse says that “the ‘Amen’ is spoken by us.” The word Amen is a declaration of agreement. To put these two halves together we see that God’s job is the “yes”–it is His burden to bring the promise about. Our job, is the “amen”. Our work is to agree and keep agreeing until the promise is fulfilled. We have the hard work of faith.
The great news is that God is promising to empower us through Christ to continue our “Amen.” The verse says, “And so through him the ‘amen’ is spoken by us to the glory of God.” He enables our faith to endure.
Is there a promise you have wearied of waiting for? My hope and prayer is that you will gently pick it up again. Examine it, take a deep breath asking for Christ’s power to move through you and whisper your “amen” again. Let the breath of your faith blow the dust off of hope. Add your “Amen” to the “Yes” of God once more.
May you be like Mary who would take the promises of God and tuck them into her heart like a treasure.
But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. ~Luke 2:19 (NIV)
May they be a source of strength, wonder and delight to you. Your enduring “Amen” will meet the “Yes” of God some day. And, like Moses, your faith will be counted toward you as righteousness.
What are the promises you are believing for? I would love to add my “amen” to yours. Please comment below, I’d love to join my prayers to yours and we will believe together.