|I never tire of reading about the patriarchs in the Old Testament. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob provide me with insights to the subject of biblical faith. For me it is like gazing at a beautiful painting that a person visits again and again in some art gallery; sitting for hours and admiring each beautiful stroke. Unlike a beautiful work of art, the lives of these men strike a chord with me because they all faced adversity, obstacles, and discouragement. Their journeys did not begin with confident faith in God, but over time, in spite of their individual failures, they persevered and became men of faith.|
I am reminded of times in my life when my faith was challenged, and for me it inevitably comes down to a choice between life and death; without Christ, my life is doomed to failure, frustration and discouragement. None of us has the ability to see the road which lies ahead. Perhaps if we could, our choices would be different, but good or bad, right or wrong, I make choices in life that I hope produce a favorable outcome. I suppose, that can be viewed as selfish, but I don’t believe it is selfish for a father to love his children, a husband or wife to love each other, to love a friend, or simply to love others as much as I love myself.
At some point in our lives, we will face a crisis of some type, be it death, illness, or catastrophe; something which reminds us that we are powerless to face the obstacle that lies on the road ahead of us. I have to believe that for Jacob, the only thing that mattered the night he wrestled with God was to discover the height, length, breadth and width of God’s touch. I have brothers, but I have never known the fear that my brother wanted to kill me.
Jacob lived with that fear for twenty years.
Can you imagine his thoughts when God spoke to him?
“Go back to the land of your fathers and to your relatives, and I will be with you.”
I can only imagine what questions went through his mind:
“God has said, Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
To know that God is with you every step of the way instills confidence in a person; enough confidence to return and face possible death. Yet, confidence alone isn’t always enough. Sometimes we need a little reassurance, a spiritual pat on the back.
Jacob needed it that night.
Like the centurion soldier, Jacob humbled himself in the presence of God and said, I’m not worthy of all you’ve done for me. I left with nothing, and I’m returning with a family, livestock, servants, and wealth. I have been a “grabber” all my life; holding on to what I wanted most. But now, I want to lay hold of what has laid hold to me!
Have you ever felt that moment of desperation when all you could do is call on the name of the Lord?
Sometimes it comes from a sense of panic or fear. Other times it comes from the knowledge that there is no other help you know. Whatever the reason, you find yourself calling on Jesus to come to your aid.
You grapple with a spiritual battle whether you know it or not. The bible declares that:
“...we are not wrestling with flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) sphere.”
So the real opposition is spiritual, not physical, emotional, financial, or intellectual; it pits you against the powers that oppose God.
I don’t know if Jacob understood this when he grabbed on to God as he pleaded for help from the only one capable of helping him; the God of Abraham and Isaac.
This same God is also the God of Jacob.
What does this me for you?
He is your God as well!
It is not the length of our prayers, or the many words that one utters that matter. It is our willingness to trust God with the outcome. To enter into agreement with Him; to say, Amen!
Maybe you won’t have a dislocated hip at the conclusion of your prayer, but you will have an answer! Maybe your answer will take time. Are you willing to faithfully wait? Maybe your answer is “No”. Are you faithful enough to trust that God knows best?
Whatever God says in answer to your prayer, know that He will touch your life in a way like no one else can.
Do you need to be touched? Stretch out your hand to the God of heaven and earth.
One touch from the Master will radically change your life. Let Him touch you, right now where you are.
Jesus: I need you in my life. I need you to bless my life, my relationships, my family. Someone I know and love needs Your protection. Touch them right now Lord. Whatever You do, it’s alright with me. I believe You are working a plan for my life and that plan will prosper in me. Bless me Lord. Not because I’m worthy, but because You are merciful, gracious, and loving. Guide me Lord in the way I should go because You order my steps. You are Son of the Most High God and I give You all the praise, with my whole heart, mind, soul, body and strength. Thank You right now Lord for Your blessed goodness. Amen.
|Note: This post is linked to Spiritual Sundays (hosted by Charlotte).|