Reflections: January 20, 2021
By William K. Stottlemyer
The Lord said to Abraham, "Why did Sarah laugh and say, 'Shall I indeed bear a child, now that I am old?' Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, about this time next year, and Sarah shall have a son." (Genesis 18:12-13)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Sarah was old and well past childbearing years. Nothing on this earth could change the fact that her body had stopped being able to produce a child. So it is no surprise that this woman laughed when she heard the words of the Lord. She knew that she and Abraham could not have a son. However, the Lord had other plans. "Is anything too hard for the Lord? " Time passed, and a son was born. It was a miracle in the eyes of the world but a simple act for the Lord.
Often in the midst of our own hardships, we react just like Sarah. God cannot fix this. God won't do that. We laugh at the promises of God and think that our problems are too big, our sins are too great. It's impossible!
In our sin-filled flesh, we have created a god who cannot do the impossible. Stop laughing, and just believe. You have a God who does the impossible all the time. He is the Lord, and there is nothing He cannot do. He created the earth out of nothing. He redeemed His people by the death of His innocent Son on the Cross. He forgives sins and gives new life to those who were dead and His enemies. This God does the impossible all the time. He brought forth a son from a womb past the age of giving birth, and He daily forgives our sins and brings new life to us sinners. Nothing is too hard for our God. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
Lord and Father of all, You looked with favor upon Sarai in her advanced years, putting on her a new name, Sarah, and with it the promise of multitudinous blessings from her aged womb. Give us a youthful hope in the joy of our own new name, being baptized into the promised Messiah that we, too, might be fruitful in Your kingdom, abounding in the works of Your Spirit; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen. (Scot A. Kinnaman, ed., Treasury of Daily Prayer [Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 2008], 1137.)
-Rev. William K. Stottlemyer is the pastor of St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Hancock, MD.
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