The LORD said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him, “Now lift up your eyes and look from the place where you are, northward and southward and eastward and westward; for all the land which you see, I will give it to you and to your descendants forever. I will make your descendants as the dust of the earth, so that if anyone can number the dust of the earth, then your descendants can also be numbered. Arise, walk about the land through its length and breadth; for I will give it to you.”
I include the entire promise in this morning’s verses not because I intend to focus in on the promise itself, but because cutting God off mid-promise felt wrong. What caught my attention is when this promise was made.
This promise is given to Abram after Lot had separated from him. Lot separated from Abram because there was contention between their herdsmen (v7) and because Abram asked him to separate so that there would not be any contention (v8). I notice that it was Abram who suggested that they put some distance between them in order to avoid argument between their herdsmen. Not Lot. I also note that Abram takes the selfless part by offering to go wherever Lot chooses not to go. All of this is a bit of a big deal, since Abram, as the older of the two, had every right to tell Lot to go away and to take the best land for himself.
The promise comes on the heels of Abram being a selfless peacemaker.
When there is contention — and there will be — let me take the part of Abram and, even if I have every right to do what I want, let me selflessly seek to make peace. It is in that place that God promises blessing to Abram. And it is in that place that God will be able to bless me, too.
Father, thank You for being a God Who makes promises and keeps them. Thank You for the promises that You have already made. Please teach me to walk the path of selfless peacemaking; the path that You walked when You went to the cross and made peace between us.