Abraham and Sarah’s son Isaac was now all grown up. He was ready to get married, and start a family of his own. God had promised Abraham his children’s children’s children would go on to become a great nation that would bless all the earth. But first, his one and only son would have to start a family.
Abraham asked his servant to go to his hometown to look for a wife for Isaac, because that’s what God had told him to do. “Promise me you will find the right wife for him,” Abraham asked. “But if she doesn’t want to come along, you don’t have to keep this promise.” So the servant gave Abraham his word that he would do everything he had been told to do.
When Abraham’s servant got there, he let the camels rest near the well outside the city. It was late in the afternoon, the time when the women came out for water. How would he know which woman he was supposed to ask to come with him?
The servant did the best thing to do when making a decision. He prayed. “Lord, please keep your promise to Abraham and help me find a wife for Isaac today. When the young women of the city come to this well for water, I’ll ask one of them for a drink. If she gives me a drink and then also offers to get some water for my camels, I’ll know she is the one you have chosen and that you have kept your promise to Abraham.”
While he was still praying, a woman named Rebecca came by with a water jar on her shoulder. She was beautiful, single, and from the place where Abraham had lived. Rebecca walked past Abraham’s servant, went over to the well, and filled her water jar. The servant nervously spoke to her. “Could I please have a drink of water?”
“Of course!” she replied happily. She took the jar from her shoulder and gave him water. After he had finished, she added, “Your camels are welcome to all the water they want, too,” and then poured out water for them. She generously kept going back to the well for more, until his camels were no longer thirsty.
The servant was so happy that God answered his prayer right away. He immediately gave gifts to Rebecca and asked if her parents had room for him and his camels to stay.
At her home, the servant told her family why he had come. They knew Abraham and realized this was God’s plan.
They answered him, “Let’s ask Rebecca what she wants to do.” They called her and asked, “Do you want to go with him to marry Abraham’s son?”
“Yes,” she answered. “I do.”
Rebecca traveled back to meet Isaac and marry him. In the end, Isaac married the woman God had planned for him because Abraham and his servant did the two most important things we can do when trying to make a decision: Follow the instructions that God has already given, and pray for guidance.