Not Even Ten
Abraham had been staring into the flames of the campfire for some time. Walking over to her husband, Sarah wrapped her arms tightly around him from the back. Giving a squeeze, she asked, “Are you okay? You’ve hardly said a word since the Lord left. It was a wonderful visit even if I’m still amused the Lord would consider the possibility of me bearing a child in my old age.”
Shaking his head, Abraham turned around taking Sarah into his arms, “I’m sorry, dear, did you say something?”
“Are you still thinking about what the Lord said regarding Sodom?” Sarah asked putting her head on his chest. “Do you think the Lord will destroy the city?”
“I don’t think so,” Abraham said. “Surely, there are at least ten righteous people to be found in Sodom. He promised not to destroy the city if they are there. Lot is living there now and the last I heard, he was involved in city government.”
Looking up into her husband’s dark eyes, Sarah responded, “I’m sorry to say this but I wouldn’t count on Lot being among the righteous. He always had a selfish streak in him. Remember how self-centered he was when it came to choosing the fertile plain of the Jordan for himself? Quite literally, the grass has always been greener elsewhere for that man.”
Pulling her shawl around her shoulders, Sarah walked toward their tent. “It’s been a long day. I’m going to bed,” she said while giving her husband a quick kiss on the cheek. “Do you want to come along? Maybe we can start working on that heir tonight.” A slight blush appeared on her cheeks followed by a girlish giggle.
“Woman, even at your age I love the sound of your giggles,” Abraham laughed with a pat on her rump. “But not tonight, dear. I know the Lord was going directly to Sodom once he left here. I won’t be long but I want to pray for those ten righteous folks to be found. I expect come morning the city will still be standing.”
“Why have such high hopes for a wicked city like Sodom?” Sarah asked. “The debauchery must be a stench in the Lord’s nostrils.”
Standing for a moment, Abraham pulled on his long beard pondering his wife’s question. “It’s not so much the city which concerns me as it is Lot and his family. I pray they haven’t forgotten our long campfire discussions about God and His faithfulness.”
After getting a warm blanket and a flask of water, Abraham sat out for a hill where he would be able to observe the Jordan plain. Hopefully, there won’t be anything to it. I’m believing God for a quiet night, he thought while wrapping himself in the blanket and sitting with his back against a rock. Please, Lord, keep Lot and his family safe.
Looking up at the stars, Abraham began counting. After an hour, he gave up after he had only counted a small fraction of stars in one small corner of God’s vast universe.
Lord, You promised me I’d be the father of many. Just like I’m not able to count all the stars, I won’t be able to count all my descendants. I believe You, You know. I do believe You. I don’t see how You’re going to give a crazy old man like me heirs, but You said it and I believe it.
Sarah believes it too. What a beautiful woman You’ve blessed me with, Lord. I don’t deserve such a wonderful woman. I really don’t, but for some reason You’ve looked beyond all my faults and blessed me anyway.
Realizing his ancient body couldn’t take the hard ground and late night, Abraham set off for the tent.
Lord, could you do that for Sodom too? Could You look down on them tonight and find those ten righteous people I so desperately want You to find? I know You won’t destroy the city if they are there. You’re an awesome God and I’ve never known You to lie. Thank You for allowing me to even discuss this with You. That alone shows Your compassion.
Abraham opened his eyes to hazy sunshine. An acrid smell caused him to rub his nose and sneeze. Slowly walking over to the spot where he and Lord had stood on the previous day, Abraham was able to get a grim look at the smoldering plain.
Not even so much as ten? What a shame.
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