“Lot, who was traveling with Abram, had also become very wealthy with flocks of sheep and goats, herds of cattle, and many tents. But the land could not support both Abram and Lot with all their flocks and herds living so close together. So disputes broke out between the herdsmen of Abram and Lot. (At that time Canaanites and Perizzites were also living in the land.) Finally Abram said to Lot, ‘Let’s not allow this conflict to come between us or our herdsmen. After all, we are close relatives! The whole countryside is open to you. Take your choice of any section of the land you want, and we will separate. If you want the land to the left, then I’ll take the land on the right. If you prefer the land on the right, then I’ll go to the left.’


Lot took a long look at the fertile plains of the Jordan Valley in the direction of Zoar. The whole area was well watered everywhere, like the garden of the Lord or the beautiful land of Egypt. (This was before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.)… After Lot had gone, the Lord said to Abram, ‘Look as far as you can see in every direction—north and south, east and west. I am giving all this land, as far as you can see, to you and your descendants as a permanent possession. And I will give you so many descendants that, like the dust of the earth, they cannot be counted! Go and walk through the land in every direction, for I am giving it to you’.” Genesis 13:5-10, 14-17 (NLT)


Abram, later known as Abraham, had received word that there was conflict between his nephew’s workers and his workers. Given their wealth, the land could not support both families. Instead of letting the strife sever Abraham’s relationship with his nephew, Lot, Abram proposed they move in two different directions, and Lot was given the opportunity to choose his direction first. Lot had traveled with Abram when they left their homeland to follow God. Lot decided on the choice land, but God’s promise to Abram wasn’t limited to what looked good. If Abram thought going in a new direction on his own meant that he would have less, he would have been wrong. God’s earlier promise was only confirmed in response to his obedience. The empty space before Abraham was representative of a promise of future blessing, but he had to first let go before he could move forward. God gave Abram the wisdom to handle the conflict, and he didn’t let conflict around him ruin his relationship with Lot.


What do we do when we have to let go of things to walk in the promises of God? The people who have walked with you thus far in your journey may not be able to walk with you into God’s future blessing. God sends people to walk with us during specific seasons of life who may not journey with us after that season is concluded. For Abram, there would have been a sense of safety, comfort, and familiarity with a large company of people. He knew Lot; he was family. Yet, Abram didn’t let strife create unnecessary turmoil. He had to be willing to let go. We also may have people or environments in our life that bring us a sense of safety or familiarity, but we have to be careful in evaluating if we are trusting more in our circumstances or people rather than God. Whether it is strife or simply a change in direction, where God is taking you may require you to change your environment or let go of something. Be willing to take that step even if you don’t know how it will look on the other side. God will take care of you, and your obedience can make room for the fulfillment of God’s promises.

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

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About Hona Amer

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