How many of us as young people, have thought we were going to be world changers? We had this sense of a ‘big picture’ and we were going to play a significant part. I wonder if Abram thought that. He’d had this amazing promise from God, that he would become a great nation, that all the people of the world would be blessed through him. He could be forgiven a slightly inflated ego!
Actually, Abram has been one of the most significant characters in the history of mankind. Jews, Christians and Muslims all look to him as their founding patriarch. And of course, at the very least, Jesus was his descendent.
So what did Abram do right? The initiative was all on God’s side – he opened the relationship by calling Abram to leave his father’s household and go to another land, with an amazing promise that made it an offer he couldn’t refuse. Then out of the blue, God appeared to Abram (Genesis 12 v 7) with another promise to confirm he was on the right track – ‘To your offspring I will give this land.’
What was Abram’s part?
1) He obeyed (ch12 v 4 – ‘So Abram left…’)
2) He worshipped (ch 12 v 7b – So he built an altar there to the Lord, who had appeared to him.’
He made a right choice (with his mind), followed it through with action (with his body), and worshipped with his heart and soul. His response was wholehearted and thorough. And that’s what it takes to make a difference in the world.
You may think that it’s ridiculous to really think you could change the world. ‘It’s too late, I should have done more when I was younger’…’I’m not that sort of person’…’Only a few people can make that much difference, why would I be one of them?’
The story goes of a young man who walked along a beach, and saw countless starfish, all washed up on the sand, dying. He began to throw them back in the sea, one by one. An older man watched him for a few moments then said, “You’re wasting your time. There are millions of them. You can’t possibly make a difference.” The young man thought a moment then replied, “I can make a difference for that one…and that one…and that one…”