A Plan for Ishmael

A Plan for Ishmael

The promised son Isaac is finally born! In joy, Abraham and Sarah laugh over the amazement of their situation. And when the boy is old enough to be weaned, Abraham gives a feast in his honor! However, Ishmael, Abraham's son by Hagar, is displeased, causing strife between Sarah and Ishmael, leading to Hagar and her son being sent away. But, even in their exile, God would not abandon them.

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Genesis 21:13
Abraham and Sarah have waited, prayed, and strayed many times over decades. And finally, God blessed them with a son: Isaac. It’s a joyous celebration of a promise fulfilled. But what happens with Abraham’s first son, Ishmael, and his mother, Hagar? Try to imagine what each character would have felt in this situation. Sarah finally has her son and witnesses him being mistreated by Hagar’s son, Ishmael—whom Sarah gave to Abraham to try to speed up God’s plan. Ishmael, the eldest son, knows he is not the chosen one. He was not received with jubilation. Hagar is sitting on the sidelines, knowing that Sarah hates her and her son, even though it was her idea in the first place. Think of Abraham, caught in the crossfire, trying to handle this messy situation with wisdom and care for his sons and his wife, Sarah. God works in the situation to bring good even in such a dysfunctional family dynamic. Once again, He pours grace out to His children, just as He does for you and me.
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