Thought for the week by pastor Diana Rutherford

by Struthers Cumbernauld

 ‘After Lot had gone, the Lord said to Abram, “Look as far as you can see in every direction—north and south, east and west. I am giving all this land, as far as you can see, to you and your descendants as a permanent possession.’

Genesis 13:14-15

Recently Graham and I managed to take a day off and headed up to the hills for a very welcome break. It was a beautiful sunny day!

After walking for just over an hour we began to catch sight of rolling hills, wide open spaces and magnificent views. This verse came to mind. It’s a verse I’ve loved for many years as I’ve always been able to visualise the land of far distances, endless possibilities for God, living a life of faith and bringing others to Christ. It’s been my privilege and joy throughout the years to enjoy all that that means. However, on this occasion I found myself thinking the opposite; about lives who cannot see the vast, endless, hazy horizon but are enveloped in their own small world of joys and sorrows, pleasures and problems. How small their world is compared to Abraham’s! I appreciate we can’t all be Abrahams, pioneers of new places; but surely there are far too many of us who are like Martha rather than Abraham. Our Lord Jesus said to her:

“My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Luke 10:41-42

Are you so absorbed in all the small details of every day living that you miss the bigger picture? Abraham had to look up to see the land. The words were ‘Look up as far as you can...’

Surely we can all try to do that. You might not be able to see very far but at least you can look up beyond your immediate surroundings.

These words were spoken to Abraham after Lot had gone. He couldn’t have looked up before that; he was too busy coping with Lot! His problem nephew had now left and suddenly Abraham was free; no longer worried and upset over the small details in life. He could suddenly see the plan of God.

Our problems might not disappear as easily as Abraham’s. Maybe our troubled nephew keeps hanging on! There is however, something we can learn here. We need to let go inside ourselves. We need to stop worrying about problems we cannot fix, troubles that actually are not our own and we need to look up and see as far as we can into the land of far horizons, the greatness of our God.

Life is full of endless possibilities. We only live once. Don’t let others wreck yours! Don’t let your own difficulties rob you of your joy in life. Find Christ in all things!

To close, let me share a short but true story. A friend left our home one Sunday evening. As she went out the garden gate we suddenly noticed the northern lights streaking across the sky. They weren’t terribly clear but we could definitely see long pinks and greens moving slowly in the sky.  Chatting with my friend a few days later, I asked if she had seen them. She laughed saying no she had been too absorbed with a hedgehog that was crossing her path to look up. She missed the glory in the heavens for a hedgehog! Make sure you don’t miss the purpose and glory of life for some prickly difficult situation that has so absorbed you. Remember:

‘There is only one thing worth being concerned about.’ Luke 10:42