Needing Wisdom and Trust In New Endeavors
 And Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age at the time of which God had spoken to him.  Abraham called the name of his son who was born to him, whom Sarah bore him, Isaac.
 And Sarah said, “God has made laughter for me; everyone who hears will laugh over me.”  And she said, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.”
 And the child grew and was weaned. And Abraham made a great feast on the day that Isaac was weaned.  But Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, laughing.  So she 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.”
So many times, when we want to do something good, we have a zillion good things that we’re already doing that we feel like we can’t quit. Ishmael was about 14 years old, old enough to make fun of and laugh at Isaac when he was weaned. He was still considered a boy, but he wasn’t a baby!
Here is Abraham, faced with a choice. God said He would bless Abraham’s offspring, which He has been doing for 14 years! Now Isaac is here, and God says “Send them away, I’ll take care of it.” Can you imagine how hard that was for Abraham?
There is a way of interpreting scripture as prescriptive or descriptive. This story would be descriptive. It retells things that actually happened, but it is not prescribing us to do things in the same way. But, we can gain some insight from what went down.
God is never going to call us to break a covenant with a spouse or a child. That doesn’t reflect His character at all. Zoom out a little bit, and you can see that God might call us from one 14 year commitment to another. And He can handle that old commitment. God promises to take care of Hagar and Ishmael because that was part of God’s covenant. I remember some GLS speaker said years ago, “If you’re doing something because you think nobody else will do it, you’re underestimating God.”
Trusting God to take care of things that we participate in is a great way to bring glory to God. We can trust Him as we make our decisions for the new year.
 I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth.  So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth.  He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor.  For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field, God’s building. (1 Corinthians 3:6–9 ESV)