God's Covenant with Abraham

Today's Reading: Genesis 15:1-21; 17:1-8

So this Abram guy got a new name.  But not only that, he got a couple of covenants with God.

It's worth noting that God is the one who initiates both of these covenants.  One of the covenants has to do with Abraham's descendants gaining possession of the land the Abram is currently wandering around in.  The other is about Abram getting a new name (Abraham) and becoming the father of many nations.  Oh, and Abraham is currently 99 years old!

God comes to Abraham and initiates these covenants with him.  By all human accounts, Abraham is old, worn, and used up.  He's got nothing left and certainly doesn't seem like the kind of person that anyone would consider to be especially valuable for any reason.  But God makes him a promise that young men today couldn't possibly fathom as a legacy.

What does that mean?  It means that God is in the business of making old, worn out things valuable again.  It means that as tired and useless as I (or you) may think I am, God still cares.  And he cares enough to pursue us, to give us attention, to call us into service to him.  How many 99 year olds do you know are just now getting energized and ready to take on the world?  Abraham probably wasn't consider a great comeback, either.  But that didn't matter to God.

It's a lot easier for us to look in the mirror and find all the things that are wrong with us.  We do the same thing with churches, old shoes, and iPhones.  If God was inclined to throw things out after they spoiled, the Bible never would have made it past Adam & Eve taking a bite out of a piece of fruit.  God delights in using the imperfect and broken.  He delights in using each of us.  Perhaps he made a specific covenant with Abraham about land - something that symbolized wealth, success, prosperity, and importance.  But the same promises hold true for us, today.  Those willing and able to trust and walk with God in faith, will be blessed.  We never hit a point where God doesn't care or decided he's done with us.