Isaac prayed to the LORD for his wife, because she was barren; and the LORD granted his prayer, and his wife Rebekah conceived. (Gen. 25:21)
As I sit down and write this devotion, it is the morning of Election Day in the United States. By tonight, millions of ballots will be cast for thousands of persons running for office. All eyes though will be on the Presidential race, anxiously awaiting the results. I can honestly say I’m one of those persons sitting on their hands, trying their best for Nov. 9th to get here (if only so I don’t have to watch any more political ads for a while.)
Leading up to this day, I’ve been praying for more civility to rule the day. I’ve been praying for persons spouting hatred and hostility (on both sides) to experience change and metanoia. I’ve been praying for the Kingdom of God and it’s topsy-turvy priorities (the last shall be first and the first shall be last) to wedge their way into hearts. I’ve been praying for love to elicit better manifestations of ourselves.
If social media is any indicator, I guess you could say I’ve been praying for a miracle. And if I’m honest, it sucks. It makes me want to cry. I can remind myself that miracles are not common, they are little glimpses of the Kingdom to come, but that is no solace. I can’t(nor should I) theologize pain.
I wonder how many tears Isaac and Rebekah cried. Genesis tells us Isaac was 40 when he married Rebekah and 60 when his twin boys were born. That’s twenty years of pain. Twenty years of heartache. Twenty years of anguish. Read between the lines of Scripture and you can see twenty years of unanswered prayers.
We can glibly move through a story such as this, noting how nice it is God answered Isaac’s prayer of desperation, but not really thinking about what went on behind the scenes. The lives of Esau and Jacob were gifts of God (read miracle here) because they were lives born out of prayer. But for Isaac and Rebekah, this is only too prevalent because they had to wait, hope, and pray for twenty years.
In my desperation for the hearts and minds of America to be changed by the radical love and grace of Jesus, I often miss the pattern in which God works. Time. God takes God’s time. It might be longer than I would like, but that’s just how God is. All I, and we, can do is pray and trust in the promise of Christ, who is making all things new.
Might it be so this Election Day.