Nearly 25 years had passed since the Lord first spoke to Abram in Ur. Since then, his spiritual roots had pushed deep into the soil of faith in his God. At long last, he trusted in the Lord’s promise and rested in His sovereign will. He was now capable of receiving the covenant blessings.
The Lord announced, “I will give My covenant between Me and you” (my literal rendering of the Hebrew). Of course, the agreement wasn’t new; God had made this covenant earlier. He merely reconfirmed the covenant as a precursor to announcing that the time had come for the fulfilment of the first part. For Abram to become the father of a multitude of nations, he would need to father a son with Sarai.
To memorialize this moment, God gave Abram a new name. His birth name, “exalted father,” honoured the moon god Abram’s father worshipped. His new name, Abraham, means “father of a multitude.” When people asked about the significance of his name, he could explain, “I am so named because El-Shaddai made a covenant with me. My descendants, as uncountable as the stars, will become a nation, and they will inherit the land on which we now stand.” But Abram wasn’t ready for this new name, this new assignment, until he’d gone deep in his walk with the Almighty.
Our schools turn out lots of educated people. Top companies find the most intelligent people. Gifted people flock to New York, Hollywood, Las Vegas, and Nashville. But people of depth are rare. Not many people have the foresight or the patience to cultivate spiritually deep roots. I challenge you to go deep yourself—and to be on the lookout for deep people. Look carefully. You won’t find an overabundance.
In what ways are you living on the surface in your relationship with God? How can you begin to go deeper?
Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. —Colossians 2:7
Excerpted from Charles R. Swindoll, Faith for the Journey: Daily Meditations on Courageous Trust in God (Tyndale House Publishers, 2014). Copyright © 2014 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by permission.