Miraculous Understatement

John Koedyker

READ : Genesis 21:1-7

Sarah became pregnant and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the very time God had promised him. (v. 2, niv)

For ten chapters we have observed the ups and downs of the lives of Abraham and Sarah. Many of the “downs” involved Sarah’s continuing childlessness. How can God’s promises come true without a son? Now when that wonderful day on which the promise is fulfilled finally arrives, it is striking that the Bible reports it in such a low-key manner: “Sarah became pregnant and bore a son . . .” That’s it? A miracle has just taken place! The impossible just occurred! You would think the biblical writer would have written with a little more excitement.

But there is a kind of paradox here. What God does should never cease to amaze us. But that he does wonders shouldn’t. God is God—why should we be astounded by the impossible? He is capable of doing anything! So when God performs a miracle we should be impressed, but not surprised.

When my dad was diagnosed with cancer the doctor had no hope for him whatsoever. But God had other plans. We prayed and prayed, and he lived many years after that. We were impressed, certainly, but not surprised. Never stop trusting God—and don’t be surprised when prayers are answered!


Lord, give us the perseverance to keep on trusting you no matter what. Amen.