People Who Say Such Things: Take the Road Less Traveled

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February 5, 2020

Genesis 13:8-9 (NIV)

8 So Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herders and mine, for we are close relatives. 9 Is not the whole land before you? Let’s part company. If you go to the left, I’ll go to the right; if you go to the right, I’ll go to the left.” 

CONSIDER THIS

Let’s back up a couple thousand years from yesterday—all the way back to the almost beginning—back to Abraham (aka Abram). God called him to leave everything he had ever known to pursue a future beyond his imagining based on the promise of God’s Word. Genesis 12:4 may be the most consequential text in all of Scripture:

So Abram went, as the Lord had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Harran.

Three side points. 1. Simple obedience. 2. Take others with you. 3. God doesn’t accept, “I’m too old” excuses.

Back to the story. The relatives apparently ran into conflict, as family is wont to do. At last their respective tribes weren’t jiving. It brings us to today’s text:

8 So Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herders and mine, for we are close relatives. 9 Is not the whole land before you? Let’s part company. If you go to the left, I’ll go to the right; if you go to the right, I’ll go to the left.” 

People who say such things are abundance people. You are open handed, trusting, and generous. Because you know what it means to freely receive something, you also know what it means to freely give it away. People like this are not afraid of getting the short end of the stick. You don’t live in scarcity, even when it seems like resources are extremely scarce. You know there’s always more than meets the eye; even when things like this happen:

10 Lot looked around and saw that the whole plain of the Jordan toward Zoar was well watered, like the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt. (This was before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.) 11 So Lot chose for himself the whole plain of the Jordan and set out toward the east. The two men parted company:

Two roads diverged in a wood and I . . . Let’s just say Abram took the road less traveled and it made all the difference. Sometimes, maybe even often, faith looks a lot like trusting deference. It looks like being in charge and surprisingly taking the back seat; conceding the advantage to someone else. Lot took the other road, and it did not work out—to put it mildly. Lot took the “garden of the Lord” land and it turned into a wasteland. Do the names Sodom and Gomorrah ring a bell? 

And somewhere in here there’s a word to families in conflict, maybe even brothers who are struggling to get along. Take a page from Abram’s playbook. Be a person who says such things. Be the bigger brother.

So what about Abram? Sooner or later, here’s what happens to abundance people:

14 The Lord said to Abram after Lot had parted from him, “Look around from where you are, to the north and south, to the east and west. 15 All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever. 16 I will make your offspring like the dust of the earth, so that if anyone could count the dust, then your offspring could be counted. 17 Go, walk through the length and breadth of the land, for I am giving it to you.”

It’s why you want to be a person who says such things. 

THE PRAYER

Father, I want to be a person who trusts you explicitly and implicitly. I want to be such a person who could prefer to apparently lose a conflict in the interest of winning the peace. Show me this way of wise deference to others, of yielding the front row parking space, or the front row seat or the advantage at work or in a family estate or maybe even a church or a whole denomination. And give me the joy of seeing your faithfulness in leading me to something far greater than I might have imagined. Root out all the scarcity thinking that remains in me. I want to be an abundance person. Come Holy Spirit, and train me be one of these kind of people. I pray in Jesus name, Amen. 

THE QUESTION

Any situations come to mind from your own life from reading today’s Daily Text? Are you more of a scarcity person or an abundance person at this point in your life and faith? How can you grow toward abundance? 

P.S. O.K. Sowers, only a few more days of the SOWERS SPECIAL on the First Word—Last Word—God’s Word book. Purchase 5 copies and get them and as many more as you like at 50% off. Sharing a copy with a colleague, friend or family member is a perfect way to invite them into our Daily Text Community. I will include such an invitation in the book—as well as an explicit invitation to follow Jesus. 

For the Awakening,
J.D. Walt
Sower-in-Chief
seedbed.com

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Farmer. Poet. Theologian. Jurist. Publisher. Seedbed's Sower-in-Chief.

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