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Genesis 11:27-32, Descendants of Terah

Narrative Lectionary Key Verse for Today

Now Sarai was barren; she had no child. 
— Genesis 11:30

NL Daily Devotion for Saturday, September 15, 2018


by Rev. Stefanie Fauth, Clergy Stuff

In the time this text was written, there was not much known about reproductive health.
In this time, a woman was supposed to have children and raise them.
The author makes sure we know she has not yet had a child - it is part of crafting a larger story, the miracle birth of Isaac - but her feelings don't seem to matter in the way this story is told.
Rather than say she has no children because of fertility issues, they give her a label that you would assign to a desert.  It's a very poor word choice - and word choices matter.

Wanting children and being unable to have them is a struggle many face even today.  We are blessed to have more medical knowledge and that there is even more help for couples to conceive - but it doesn't change the pain for those who are still waiting.

We don't know who these people are - some who have already had children want more and are hurting.  Some who have never mentioned wanting children are waiting and hurting.  Some are suffering miscarriage or infant loss in silence - they can use our love and support.  We can offer it in being careful in our language - avoiding asking people personal questions about when they want kids or how many they want.  We never know the journey someone is on, so let us err on the side of kindness in our choices of words.

Narrative Lectionary Daily Reading:

Genesis 11:27-32

Now these are the descendants of Terah. Terah was the father of Abram, Nahor, and Haran; and Haran was the father of Lot. Haran died before his father Terah in the land of his birth, in Ur of the Chaldeans. Abram and Nahor took wives; the name of Abram’s wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor’s wife was Milcah. She was the daughter of Haran the father of Milcah and Iscah. Terah took his son Abram and his grandson Lot son of Haran, and his daughter-in-law Sarai, his son Abram’s wife, and they went out together from Ur of the Chaldeans to go into the land of Canaan; but when they came to Haran, they settled there. The days of Terah were two hundred five years; and Terah died in Haran.

Related & Recent Posts

Earlier Event: September 14
Genesis 11:10-26, Descendants of Shem
Later Event: September 16
Genesis 12:1-9, Call of Abraham