Jim Burns Homeword Daily Devotional for Parenting and Christian Family

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HomeWord - Feb. 26, 2008

They Laughed 
This devotional was written by Kelly McFadden

“Then one of them said, ‘I will return to you about this time next year, and your wife, Sarah, will have a son.’ Sarah was listening to this conversation from the tent.  Abraham and Sarah were both very old at this time, and Sarah was long past the age of having children.  So she laughed silently to herself and said, ‘How could a worn-out woman like me enjoy such pleasure, especially when my master – my husband – is so old?’ Then the Lord said to Abraham, ‘Why did Sarah laugh… Is there anything too hard for the Lord?’”  Genesis 18:10-14 (NLT)

As in many urban areas throughout our country, in Orange County, California one can find families who live in motels.  There are a variety of reasons that lead to the necessity of living day to day in a small motel room with anywhere from 4-8 people. Many, for example, are simply workers who are too poor to live anyplace else.  To me, one heartbreaking part of this situation is seeing children living in these conditions, as far too often these motels house not just families, but others with a host of problems such as drugs and prostitution.

Each month, I join with a group of volunteers from our church and we head over to a motel to tutor and play games with the children who live there.  A little girl living there joins this group each week. Her name is Rachel.  In the beginning, she would simply come and watch.  Slowly her shell began to crack.  She became more and more comfortable with the volunteers and began to open up. About a month ago, I saw something I had never seen.  Rachel laughed.  She and a volunteer were laughing so hard that tears rolled down their cheeks. It was a very special moment to observe.

If you had told me a year ago that one day Rachel would laugh so freely, I would never have believed you.  I thought that this would have been impossible because she was too damaged by her life and circumstances.  But, God gave Rachel a safe place where she learned she was loved and as she became comfortable, she laughed.  It must also have felt impossible to Sarah when the Lord revealed that she and Abraham would have a child in their old age.  But for the Lord, everything is possible.  He changes lives. He makes dreams come true. He is our protector, and He is our savior.  He made Abraham the father of many nations, and He gave a little girl the opportunity to laugh. Imagine what He might do in your life!

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1. Think about a time when you didn’t trust God to deliver as He promised.  How did this change your faith?

2. Why is it difficult, at times, to trust that the Lord will do as He said? What causes your doubt?


Psalm 34:1-4; Jeremiah 32:17; Romans 4:18-21

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