“And he brought him forth abroad (outside), and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell (count) the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed (descendants) be.”Genesis 15:5
I grew up in the city of Phoenix, not too far from downtown. There were periods of time we were able to see the stars, but we were not a family that had a telescope in order to view the stars amongst the city lights. We would go camping once a year or so and we could see many more stars, but there were still lights aglow from the Coleman lamps. I was not much into viewing the stars, even though I thought they were cool. I was aware of the many constellations, but did not know how to find them in the sky. I accompanied Rebekah on a work trip one summer in Sedona, and my whole view of the constellations changed that night.
We were invited to go out to the resort tennis court where they had a high-powered telescope set up. There was a ladder next to the telescope for us to climb up on to get a glance at the night sky. The resort was purposely dark at night, so there were no lights to block the stars. I climbed up on the ladder and peered into the telescope and it seemed like a whole new world up there. The stars were so vivid and they twinkled and shone as if they were illuminated by the sun. I was amazed by what I saw and could look into the sky for hours, but the host pointed out some things to me and my time was over. I wanted to get back in line, but there were many others who were waiting for the same glimpse I had. I walked away amazed, hoping to get back there to have a second look.
I never made it back to the resort to have another look, but we recently travelled to Eagar, Arizona where the sky came alive to me once again. We were at a Christian camp that had only a few outside lights and the stars could be observed in all their glory. We came back to our rented house and went out to the backyard and could still see the stars clearly as there were no street lights to be seen nearby. I looked up at the sky, and God brought this verse to mind. I thought of how Abraham looked at this same sky and God gave him a promise that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars. I am sure in Abraham’s day there were no street lights or Coleman lanterns, and I can assure you he had a great glimpse of the nighttime sky.
At this point in his life, Abraham did not even have a son from his wife, Sara, but I imagine that in his faith, he thought of his descendants occupying the earth as the stars that were spread out against the sky. The great God who made this promise was the same God who hung the stars. I was in awe of my God as I once again gazed upon the sky trying to number the stars without much success. As promised, Abraham’s descendants cannot be numbered, much like the stars, and it once again affirmed to me the greatness of my God.
Do you stand on the promises of God or do you doubt and question them? You may say you would never question the promises of God, but your life may say something different if it is filled with doubts and worries. God never makes a promise He will not keep, and we must trust Him like Abraham did. When you are tempted to worry or doubt, look up to the sky and try to number the stars in the sky. May they remind you of our great God and how His promises cannot be broken. When you are sinking in worry and doubt, stand firm on the promises of God.