Carrie Vipperman has done it again. Written straight from the heart on an issue that will stir us in the core of our being. No matter what the mountain looks like that you are currently scaling, this post will challenge and inspire. Thanks, Carrie.
I have a sweet, spunky, extremely girly, completely fearless, two-year-old girl named Moriah Faith. About a year before she was born, we lost our 3rd little baby, Jordan Shalom, to a miscarriage. Our sweet Jesus walked us through that dark time and helped sew up the wounds. Those same wounds are now tender scars, the kind that never stops hurting when you touch them but you simply learn to live with. During those sad days, we prayed for another child. I’m not exactly sure how to explain this, but I felt like my womb was a tomb. I prayed that Jordan would not be our last and that life would grow again. Jesus answered that prayer with our daughter, Moriah Faith. All three of our children have special names with special meanings. Moriah’s was given to her because we were learning to trust God in the midst of intense fear that we would once again loose a child. Mount Moriah is the location God sent Abraham to offer Isaac as a sacrifice. Some Hebrew scholars say that the meaning of Moriah is “God is my teacher,” and as we walked through those 9 months, we saw that He was teaching us how to have faith and not fear.
In the story of Abraham, God chooses to test Abraham. Abraham finally had his precious son, the son God had promised to give him and bless him through, and then, God asks Abraham to sacrifice Isaac.
"He said, 'Take now your son, whom you love, Isaac, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I will tell you.' So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him and Isaac his son; and he split wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him." (Genesis 22:2-3)
Now, we know that Abraham had struggled with doubt before in his walk with God, but he does not struggle this time. He moves quickly to obey God’s instructions to offer up his son Isaac. Isaac even begins to wonder what is going on as they get closer to Moriah.
"Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said . . . 'Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?' Abraham said, “God will provide for Himself the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” So the two of them walked on together." (Genesis 22:7-8)
We don’t just see the actions that Abraham is taking here to obey God’s instructions. We see His faith that God will provide the sacrifice that is needed. He doesn’t know if that will be a new sacrifice to take Isaac’s place or if Isaac will be that sacrifice. But, we read in Hebrews 11:19 that Abraham “considered that God is able to raise people even from the dead.” Apparently, Abraham was willing to obey completely, trusting that God could raise his promised child from the dead! Abraham did not know what the end result of his obedience would be, but he obeyed despite this lack of knowledge.
He entrusted Isaac to God, who had promised Isaac to him, given Isaac to him, and who had promised to bless him through Isaac with as many descendants as the stars in the sky. Abraham did not understand God’s ways, but he knew that if God took Isaac away, God could never fulfill His covenant that He had made with him. Abraham believed that Isaac would be there to walk down Mount Moriah with him. And he was.
“But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said 'Abraham, Abraham! . . . Do not stretch out your hand against the lad' . . . Then Abraham raised his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him a ram caught in the thicket . . . and Abraham went and took the ram and offered him up for a burnt offering in the place of his son. Abraham called the name of that place 'The Lord Will Provide.'” (Genesis 22:11-14)
With every doctor’s appointment, ultrasound, and the final pushes of birth that I had with Moriah, I felt like I was walking up that mountain, being asked to trust God with the outcome and not wallow in worry or fear. True rest and contentment with whatever life may bring can only come with faith in God, Who knows all and is in complete control.
Lately, I’ve been reminded that this is not something to stop doing now that Moriah has been born. Every morning, I need to walk up that mountain and entrust my children to their Creator. We can try to do all the things that are good and right for our children, but in the end, they need God much more than all of our good parenting strategies. What I am slowly beginning to learn is that the best thing for me to do is point them to Jesus. Show them how much I need Jesus. Help them to recognize their need for Jesus. Teach them that Jesus is far better than anything this life has to offer. Show them that I love Jesus more than I love them or their Daddy. Obey Jesus in front of them no matter what the outcome might be. Show them that Jesus is everything.
In the end, we will never regret having the faith to walk up the Mount Moriahs in our life, because that’s where Jesus is. That’s where we see how much He loves us and is there ready and waiting to provide and tenderly take care of all that we need.