October 24, 2007 • By Ed Wrather
The LORD had said to Abram, “Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” So Abram left, as the LORD had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Haran. He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possessions they had accumulated and the people they had acquired in Haran, and they set out for the land of Canaan, and they arrived there. - Genesis 12:1-5 NKJV.
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. - Romans 8:28 NKJV.
Nearly one million people were forced to evacuate to find safety from the raging fires in California in 2007. None of them wanted to leave and some wanted to less than others. Authorities were forced to force people to leave their homes to keep them safe. As I heard in one report, an officer shouted at a family, “Get Out! I told you to get out! Get out now!” It is so very sad to see these people suffering. “Fear, shock, loss,” said a news anchor to sum up the situation for so many of those affected by the fires.
It is always difficult to face a change in circumstances and it is exponentially more difficult to face a sudden totally unwanted change as they are facing in California. Sometimes we must stand our ground, persevere, rebuild and keep on going. Sometimes we must get out of the way of what could be very harmful to us, to our family, or perhaps to future generations. Sometimes we need to be open to change, and sometimes that change that is required may be drastic.
Abraham was comfortable living in relative comfort and civilized surroundings until in his seventies he had a sudden change of circumstances. At the age of seventy-five, God called Abraham to leave his comfortable surroundings and begin what would become a great adventure. Not only did Abraham have to move, but also his entire family. It changed his life, and life of his descendants forever. Was this change easy? No. Was this change wanted? Unlikely. Was the living of life after leaving their home easy? No. At times, it was very difficult. Was it God’s will? Yes.
We may be forced to change the way we live our lives. It may come about by a raging fire, a tornado, or a hurricane. At other times, the change may come about through a sudden job loss or a downturn in the economic activity of an entire industry or nation. I once was laid off from three jobs in one year, and survival becomes the driving force of your decision making. Or, as in the case of Abraham, it may be the voice of God that directs your making a change. Whatever the cause, we should be constantly in prayer during those times of change seeking what God wants in our lives.
Even in the worst disasters good can come. Yes, it is terrible, and always will be a terrible thing, but if we are willing, God can bring some good out of it in our lives. Are you willing to trust God? Are you willing to follow His plan for your life?