“He took his brother by the heel in the womb, and in his strength he struggled with God. Yes, he struggled with the Angel and prevailed; he wept, and sought favor from Him. He found Him in Bethel, and there He spoke to us”
The story of Jacob is a very common one. Although few of us shared the womb with our brothers, and fewer still came out holding onto someone else’s foot, many of us struggle with trusting our lives into the hands of God. That was Jacob’s problem. His life was marked with great and precious promises, but he failed to see how these promises could ever be fulfilled, so he sought to assist God in bringing them to completion. This led to a life filled with stress, deceit and unnecessary difficulty. It was not long before this man, who had been promised so much, lost almost everything. It was not until Jacob finally surrendered himself to God and His ways, that he began to experience the fulfillment of the promises that had been given to Him.
Part of Jacob’s problem was that he was surrounded by others who did not know how to trust the Lord either. His parents knew the promises that had been given to their son, yet Isaac resisted them, and Rebekah pushed Jacob toward working them out in the arm of the flesh, instead of waiting on the timing of God. Sometimes, walking with Christ, and enjoying the blessed life He intends for us, is as simple as surrounding ourselves with the right people. If we develop friendships with those who also love God and want to please Him, we will be nudged in the right direction when our own faith begins to falter. Had Jacob’s mom not encouraged him to dress up in sheep skin he may not have needed to flee from his brother and could have been saved from years of hardship and anguish.
God has a plan for each of us. This plan is wrapped up in our trusting His word and walking with Christ. Sometimes, the best thing we can do is to stop trying to get the promise, and instead, just sit at the feet of the Promiser and enjoy the blessing of being in a relationship with God.