TODAY’S SCRIPTURE Genesis 12:10-20
One of the most famous explorers of modern history is Scott of the Antarctic. Sadly, Scott and his team died during their expedition. But only recently have scientists begun to understand why. It seems that they starved themselves to death while eating! It sounds like nonsense but it’s not. Nutritionists tell us that the average adult male needs to take in about 1500-2000 calories of food each day. Scott and his team took in around twice that amount. But it wasn’t enough for the activities they were involved in. “Each of the polar explorers were burning nearly 7,000 calories a day hauling their sledges, it is estimated.”⁶ The problem was that while they were eating, they were ignorant of their actual nutritional needs.
Abram finds himself in a similar situation in Genesis 12 during a famine in which he should trust in God to provide for him in the place that God has led him. Abram goes to Pharaoh in Egypt for food rather than consulting and trusting in God. But by reaching for and filling himself with the food of Egypt physically, Abram starves himself spiritually. He drains himself of faith while he fills himself with fear and self-sufficiency.
One of the greatest enemies of a life of faith is fear. This narrative in Genesis 12 shows us how fear leads Abram to make an entire series of poor decisions, beginning with going to Egypt then lying to Pharaoh. We often let fear overcome faith for the purpose of self-preservation in various famines we face: money, jobs, relationships, and even spiritual famines where we find ourselves distant from God. Lack of resources and worry about being in need can drive us to panic and make decisions we never would have otherwise. We can be sure that worry and fear will not remain isolated in just our thoughts. If left unchecked, they will lead us to turn one sin into another.
Today, I will…evaluate what famines I might be experiencing and be proactive in asking God to help me to trust in His provision for those rather than reactive in fear.