In faith these all died, not having received the promises, but they saw and reached out to them from afar, and they confessed that they were strangers and wanderers on the earth, 14for those who speak in this way make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. 15If they had been remembering the land they had gone out from, there might have been opportunity to return. 16But now they aspire to a better place, which is heavenly. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, because he has prepared a city for them. Â Â Â Â Â Hebrews 11:13-16 (HN)
â€“ Henry Neufeld:
As I read this passage this morning, the question came to my mind, â€œWould God be ashamed to be called my God?â€
Would God be ashamed to be called your God?Â Is God pleased when you announce that youâ€™re one of his children, or does he shudder?
If those questions scare you, you might try taking a look at the lives of some of the people of faith in Hebrews 11â€”their whole lives, not just the triumphs we often think ofâ€”and consider what God did with some people who were ordinary, or in some cases perhaps less than ordinary.
But for today, just consider some of the elements of this passage that tell us what it is that makes someone a person God can be proud of, someone of whom God can say, â€œIâ€™m not ashamed to be called his/her God.â€
1.Â They all died in faith.
2.Â They saw and reached out for something that they never received themselves.
3.Â They confessed that they werenâ€™t home yet.
4.Â They laid aside things that were behind them; there was no going back.
5.Â They kept right on hoping and going forward.
Thereâ€™s a simple thread that goes through all of these items.Â They trusted God!Â They trusted him with the past, they trust him with the present, and they trust him for the future.Â They werenâ€™t people who did incredible things in their own power.Â They didnâ€™t bring on the kingdom of God through personal effort.Â They did keep right on trusting no matter what happened.
Do you trust God?Â If so, even if you have weaknesses (and we all do), then God is proud to say, â€œIâ€™m ______’s (fill in your name here) God!â€