20 From there Abraham journeyed toward the territory of the Negeb and lived between Kadesh and Shur; and he sojourned in Gerar. 2 And Abraham said of Sarah his wife, “She is my sister.” And Abimelech king of Gerar sent and took Sarah. 3 But God came to Abimelech in a dream by night and said to him, “Behold, you are a dead man because of the woman whom you have taken, for she is a man’s wife.” (Gen. 20:1-3 ESV)

Time and again Abraham acts in ways that threaten to derail God’s plans to deliver a son Isaac through Abraham and Sarah. Here, as he had done before (Gen. 12), Abraham withholds the truth about his relationship to Sarah, resulting in her being taken by godless men and potentially married away–all because of fear (Gen. 20:11). So, God has to step in boldly, courageously, aggressively, and skillfully. Nothing, it seems, not even Abraham’s best/ worst attempts, can keep God’s design for Abraham and Sarah (and Isaac) from unfolding.

Just when it may seem we’ve made such a mess of things there’s no way God’s plan for our lives could ever survive, we realize, gratefully, this moxie-ness of God. He’s got unfathomable nerve, grit, determination, courage, and assertiveness. And nothing, absolutely nothing, will interfere with his grand purpose and plan–not even our train wrecks.


Thank you Father for the way you are able to work around, in, and through the mess I sometimes make of my life. Thank you for your surprising determination to see your purpose for my life become reality. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Action Step

Reflect on a recent misstep or failure. How did God work in, around or through it?

Chris Altrock.jpeg

Chris Altrock

Chris is a spiritual director, the author of seven books, a father to Jordan and Jacob, a husband to Kendra, and has preached for the Highland Church of Christ since 1998.

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