Advent Day 6: A Joy That is Lasting

And Sarah said, “God has made laughter for me; everyone who hears will laugh over me.”

Genesis 21:6

Waiting is painful. It is often a silent pain that no one sees. Our souls bear the weight with tears of longing. When our faith flickers, we attempt to take the waiting into our own hands. We deflect, we ignore, and we try to control our own stories.

Abraham and Sarah, heroes of the faith, were no exception. They believed God’s promise, but sometimes the light of their faith flickered in the long wait. Abraham and Sarah were weary of waiting, so they decided to hurry God’s promise along by their own means. When that didn’t work, they covered their pain with bitter humor.

Sarah had longed for a child and now she was 90. When God told Abraham that Sarah would bear him a son, Abraham fell on his face laughing. Sarah also laughed sardonically as she whispered to herself, “Oh sure, I’ll have a child when I’m 90 and I don’t even have the ability anymore.”

Sarah tried to keep her shattered hopes to herself, but God heard and he saw her. “Is anything too good for the Lord?” he reminded her.

The Lord did as he promised and Sarah bore a son at age 91. She laughed again, but this time joy filled her laughter. Sarah recognized that only God could bring her true joy-a joy that was lasting above circumstance and emotion.

Abraham and Sarah’s baby, Isaac, is a symbol of God’s faithfulness. Even when we are drastically unfaithful, his promises remain steadfast. Even when the pain of waiting turns to doubt and the doubt overcomes us with bitterness, God remains faithful. He alone is the solution to our waiting, the bearer of true, lasting joy.

As we focus on our waiting in this season of Advent, let’s remember God’s faithfulness. The wait is long, but Christ will come again. He will bring a joy that lasts for all eternity and chase away our pain and tears forever.

For this ornament, I wanted to make baby Isaac as a symbol of God's faithfulness. I used a small wooden bead and looped a thread through, tying it in a knot at the end. Then, I covered the knot by gluing a small piece of fabric to the back of the bead and gluing it shut, like a swaddled blanket. I drew his sleeping face with permanent marker.

Read Day 5: A God Who Keeps His Promises

Read Day 7: A God Who Provides

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