My mother’s fervent prayers for her three children were that we would come to the saving knowledge of Jesus. I know that she was burdened for us and had faith God would answer her prayers. Both my sister and I became believers as pre-teens. My brother rejected the whole notion of Jesus and waivered on believing there was a God.
In 1990, at the age of 60, she succumbed to breast cancer. My brother had not moved from his beliefs at that time. I cannot imagine how hard it must have been for my mother to go into eternity and worry that one of her children did not know the Lord.
It was such a shock for us to lose our mother. We felt she was still so young. My mother died knowing that she was going to be with the Lord and told us that. As we grieved, we sought solace in our own way. My sister and I had our faith. My brother was a little lost, but he had started to attend church with his young son.
During a service, my brother had a spiritual experience that caused him to come to faith in Jesus. It was a bittersweet moment to hear my brother’s profession of faith. My mother did not live to see her faithful prayers answered. But I do believe she rejoiced with the angels when my brother made his profession of faith.
Abraham did a similar thing. He and Sarah lived on land that God promised his descendants, even though it was not legally theirs. Some of it was occupied by the Hittites. When Sarah died, he mourned her and needed to find a place to bury her. He knew exactly where he wanted to lay her to rest and went to the owner of the land and asked to purchase it.
Because Abraham was so well thought of, the owner wanted to give it to him, but Abraham wanted to purchase it and went through all the legalities to do so. He succeeded in buying the land and buried Sarah there. Later, he and Isaac and his wives were buried there as well. This burial plot happened to be in the land of Canaan that God promised Abraham and his descendants.
Just as my mother sent up her prayers for my brother and believed he would eventually find his way to the Lord, Abraham had faith that God would give his descendants the land he was living on. He followed through in faith by purchasing it to safeguard that piece of it until God’s promise was fulfilled so his family could be buried on their own land given to them by God.
We are so results oriented, that having faith in God’s promises or that something in the future will work out that we may never see is hard. Neither my mother nor Abraham lived to see God’s promise played out. When we have faith in Him about a situation when we can’t or won’t see the outcome, it is special to God. We are telling Him we trust His plan and are resting our future in His hands. Our faith pleases Him, and he will always honor that, even if it’s in eternity.
Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. Hebrews 10:23