Hi, my name is Bobby Kamari. I’m from Living in Light and I would just love to welcome you to God Today. I pray that you’re having a glorious day and I just declare over you that you are blessed in the city. You’re blessing the field. You are blessed coming in and you are blessed going out. I also just agree with Heaven that you are making spiritual progress over at your high places of responsibility and challenge.
Today I would just love to talk briefly about a Biblical principle. I am sure that many of us are familiar with, and it’s rooted in God’s promises to Abraham. So often we can hear, you know, this idea of not settling for an Ishmael and waiting for our Isaac. That is actually rooted in, Sarah and Abraham, who ended up through self effort and through, I guess, striving trying to fulfill God’s promise over them that Abraham would be a father to many nations and that he would have numerous descendants that would fill the earth. But instead of waiting for God’s best, instead of waiting for Isaac to be born Abraham and Sarah decided to take matters into their own hands. Perhaps because of impatience, perhaps because of doubt, perhaps because of fear or grief or pain, who knows. But the bottom line is that they ended up settling for Ishmael, but by God’s grace, Isaac did show up and God’s promise was fulfilled, but it is a lesson to all of us.
Actually so many of us have fallen prey to that. We wrestle with that in our lives. You know, the discerning between what is an Ishmael and what is an Isaac. I have personally found that yes, sometimes you can see as clear as day that there is a counterfeit and that it needs to be rejected and that we need to wait for God’s promise to be fulfilled. But other times we can be faced with something that may seem like an Isaac. It may seem like God’s promises. It may seem like this is actually God, but really it’s an Ishmael. The only way we’re gonna know the difference is through communion with Jesus, through relationship with Him through leaning our entire human personality upon Him, surrendering to Him, yielding to Him and, out of that place of intimacy, we will be able to discern the difference and we will make divinely directed decisions.
I know this is certainly something that I’ve experienced several times, but once in particular, I had an experience where I was literally just sitting down, having lunch when I was out one day and a guy who was not a believer came and asked if he could sit with me and I felt prompted to actually stop doing what I was doing. I was typing away on my laptop while I was eating. So when he sat down with his food, I felt prompted to close my laptop and actually just be civil and have a conversation with him. Actually what then came out of that was he ended up being a businessman and millionaire. When he found out what it is that I do, that I’m a designer and I have my own company, I’m a creative, et cetera. He then said that he wanted to invest in me and that if I was willing to work on a project with him, um maybe eight days a month maximum for a six month period, then he would love to give me 20,000 pounds. A lot of me thought, “Oh my gosh, Lord, is this you?” This random encounter where this guy just wants to invest that much money in me for a very, very small amount of work. Like, could this be? maybe it’s not You, I’m not sure. But because I couldn’t tell, I immediately left that place after this encounter. We exchanged numbers, but then I straight away went on a three-day fast. Literally, like did not eat food again, until three days later because I was so aware that I couldn’t trust myself to discern whether this was an Ishmael or not.
At the end of the three days, it all flopped, nothing came of it. I was very grateful that I had gone on a fast, because in my own Xi, Manatee, I was likely to engage in striving or try and make things happen myself because the prospect of someone investing 20,000 pounds in you is like, “Ah, oh my gosh. Yes, please.” But thankfully I didn’t. I just carried on with life. Six months later, I had another random meeting with two people that I had been introduced to and they ended up giving me 10,000 pounds without me doing anything at all. They were believers. They said, we just see treasure in you and we want to bless that treasure. You don’t have to do anything for it. You don’t have to spend it on ministry. You just get to spend that money, how you like, because we cherish what you carry. When that second experience happened to me, I was able to look back and realize that I had an Ishmael come my way. Through my relationship with Jesus, I was able to ultimately discern it was an Ishmael and unknowingly. I was able to wait for an Isaac. I didn’t know I was doing that at the time. I just knew I couldn’t trust myself and I really wanted to make a divinely directed decision.
I just want to encourage you today that we can’t tell the difference sometimes between what is a good thing coming our way or what is God’s best. But when we are in close fellowship with Jesus, even when we don’t know the answer, even when we don’t know what to say yes to, He will show us what to say no to because there is something better down the line that he wants us to say yes to. I just want to pray over us, that we would make divinely directed decisions, that we would discern the difference between the Isaacs and the Ishmaels that come our way and that we would trust that waiting for God to show up with His very best is never invade.
Let me pray. Lord Jesus, thank You so much that all Your promises are “Yes and amen.” Thank You that You who began a good work in us, You will be faithful to complete it. Thank you, Jesus, that the plans that You have for us are plans to prosper us and to give us a hope and a future, not to harm us, but to bring us a good result. And so I just bless everyone watching God Today with this fresh assurance and this fresh confidence and steadfast patience, to be able to wait on your promises, to be fulfilled in their lives. Lord, I pray that we would make divinely directed decisions that we would be able to discern between that which is an Ishmael now and that which is an Isaac. Help us to reject every counterfeit that would rob us from receiving Your very best for us and help us Lord to lean into you without entire human personality. As we trust You to truly pour out Your very best over our lives in Jesus name,I pray this, amen.