Grace From the Start: Day 8 {Dec. 2nd}

After Leah and Rachel have their mommy wars and battle it out to see who is more loved and who can have the more babies Jacob starts to feel uneasy about his relationship with his father in law.

Jacob sees that he has gained wealth and is uneasy about the way his father in law conducts business.  The uneasiness is understandable after what happened at his wedding.  The two women who have been in a heated baby battle are in agreement about this, it is time to go.

While they are traveling Jacob sends messengers to his brother, Esau, who wanted to kill him the last time they saw one another.  The reporter says that Esau is traveling with 400 men.  A brother who has been having murderous thoughts is coming with 400 men…For good reason Jacob  is ‘greatly afraid and distressed’.  He did steal everything from this brother and then ran away.

In his fear and distress Jacob cries out to God and reminds God of the promise he made to him.  Jacob prays “But you said ‘I will surely do you good and make your offspring as sand of the sea, which can not be numbered for multitude.”

Jacob sends a peace offering and during the night, while he is waiting for his brothers response, Jacob has trouble sleeping.  He has trouble sleeping because he spends the night wrestling and that is where we are at today:

Genesis 32:22-32

22 The same night he arose and took his two wives,his two female servants, and his eleven children, and crossed the ford ofthe Jabbok.23 He took them and sent them across the stream, andeverything else that he had. 24 And Jacob was left alone. And a man wrestledwith him until the breaking of the day. 25 When the man saw that he did not prevail againstJacob, he touched his hip socket, and Jacob’s hip was put out of joint as hewrestled with him. 26 Then he said, “Let me go, for the day hasbroken.” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” 27 And he said to him, “What is your name?” And hesaid, “Jacob.”28 Then he said, “Your name shall no longer becalled Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men,and have prevailed.”29 Then Jacob asked him, “Please tell me your name.”But he said, “Why is it that you ask my name?” And there he blessed him. 30 So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel, saying, “For I have seen God face to face, and yet my lifehas been delivered.” 31 The sun rose upon him as he passed Penuel,limping because of his hip. 32 Therefore to this day the people of Israel do noteat the sinew of the thigh that is on the hip socket, because he touched thesocket of Jacob’s hip on the sinew of the thigh.” 

{Genesis 32:22-32} ESV

I have read this section over and over and each time I think ‘it is so odd for a human to be wrestling with God.’  Not only did he wrestle with God,

Jacob wins the match. 

During the wrestling match he was also able to see God face to face. 

It seems odd to me to think of someone wrestling with God but isn’t that what happens each time we open The Word.

Each time we pick up our bibles we do not instantly understand it.  There may be some pieces we never understand.  We stare at the words in black and white, we read, we ask questions. 

We wait and He reveals himself to us right there in black and white.  Jacob wrestled with God in the flesh.  We wrestle with God in The Word.

 Jacob saw God face to face and prevailed.  We see God in The Word therefore we prevail.

We don’t always understand the bible, because he is God and we are not, but we continue to pick it up and wrestle with it.  He reveals himself to us in The Word, because he is The Word, and that is when we win our wrestling match with God. 

We win because he won on the cross and in His resurrection. 

We win when he reveals himself and all His love to us in the scripture.

Thomas and the other disciples are also concerned about the things they do not understand or the things they can not see.

Thomas said to him, ‘Lord, we do not know where you are going.  How can we know the way?’  Jesus said to him “I am the way, the truth,and the life.  No one comes to the father except through me.  If you had known me, you would have known my father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” 

  {John 14:1-4}

Just as with Abraham we won’t have all the details of our life.  We won’t know each turn it will take.  What we can know is that Jesus is the way and he has made our way. When we crack open our bibles we get to know him better.  Knowing Jesus better means we know The Way better.

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