So she (Sarah) said to Abraham, 'Cast out this slave woman with her son, for the son of this slave woman shall not be heir with my son Isaac.' And the thing was very displeasing to Abraham on account of his son. But God said to Abraham, 'Be not displeased because of the boy and because of your slave woman. Whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you, for through Isaac shall your offspring be named. And I will make a nation of the son of the slave woman also, because he is your offspring.' Genesis 21:10-13 ESV
Letting go of Ishmael was difficult for Abraham. After all, he was his son. But he wasn’t a part of God’s redemptive plan. Our ABF leader asked us a few weeks ago, “Who is your Ishmael?” Who or what in your life is God asking you to let go of? What do you need to hold loosely to? Who is my Ishmael? Days later it hit me—I knew who my “Ishmael” was.
It had looked like an opportunity had come for us to parent an older child who needed us. We were so excited—here was someone who needed us, and our love was ready to pour forth. However, after a long and lengthy process, the possibility fell through. We were crushed. I had to accept that it was not God’s plan to use us in that way for this child.
So Abraham rose early in the morning . . . along with the child, and sent her (Hagar) away. And she departed and wandered in the wilderness of Beersheba.” Genesis 21:14 ESV
Abraham sent Hagar and Ishmael out with limited resources and an uncertain future. Like Abraham, though I didn’t understand it, I had to let go, trusting God to provide for this child.
And God was with the boy, and he grew up. He lived in the wilderness and became an expert with the bow. Genesis 21:20 ESV
Likewise, we’re still praying for this child and learning to trust in God’s provision—trusting that HE cares and knows all about this child and will provide.
Though we have had to let go of one child, we were destined to help another child as parents—the seeds had been planted for us to consider another adoption. We are now in the final stages of adopting our second daughter. We are grateful to God to use us as parents and entrust this child into our care. We look forward to opening our arms and our hearts and embracing this new daughter.
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