The road to great faith is often a long one. We talk about waiting on God’s timing a lot, but often, it’s more a case of God waiting on us.
Sarah started out with little faith. Upon hearing that her husband was going to be the father of many nations, she wondered how that was possible, since neither her or her husband were able to conceive a child, to say nothing of their advancing age. So, she actually tried to “help God” fulfill His promise of giving Abraham a son by offering her maidservant to her husband so she could conceive. Later, upon hearing that God’s promise involved her conceiving a child as a ninety-year-old woman, she laughed out loud.
But, in Genesis 20, Sarah gets to see God’s true power in action. Abimelech is prepared to take Sarah as his wife because Abraham tells him that she is his sister. Abimelech has a dream, where God tells him in no uncertain terms not to touch Sarah, lest he die. To make His point, God shuts the wombs of all of Abimelech’s wives and concubines. Once the matter is resolved, and Abimelech lets Sarah go, Abraham prays to the Lord to open all the wombs for childbearing, which He does. Sarah sees this, and her faith is strengthened.
Genesis never comes right out and says this, but the author of Hebrews tells us. “By faith, even Sarah herself received ability to conceive…since she considered Him faithful who had promised” (Hebrews 11:11). God always planned to keep His promise, but He waited until both Abraham and Sarah chose to believe Him before He fulfilled that promise.
Likewise, the perceived delay of God answering our prayers or seeing us through difficult times is merely God waiting on us to truly believe that He is the God who saves, protects, and prospers. Our faith is not the “magic key” to unlocking blessings; rather God’s plan for our lives often involves a process where we go from little faith to greater faith.