Monday, January 2, 2012

Genesis 42:38

38 But [m]Jacob said, “My son shall not go down with you; for his brother is dead, and he alone is left. If harm should befall him on the journey [n]you are taking, then you will bring my gray hair down to Sheol in sorrow.”

Jacob, who is also known as Israel, a man of great faith.  A man who was honored to have the tribes of Israel descend from his personal line.  And yet, here we see that he was in fear.

If you remember the story, Jacob's son, Joseph, was sold into slavery by his brothers.  Later in his life, Joseph correctly predicts a seven year famine by interpreting a dream, and he is then put in a position of great authority.  His brothers come to him for food, not knowing it is him, and he asks them to bring back Benjamin, the brother who would be from the same mother as himself.  Jacob clearly does not want to send Benjamin.  He really isn't sure he can take anymore.  His life has been filled with sorrow.

Yet, God has great blessings for him in what appears to be a storm of life.  He means these things for Jacob's good.  He is about to bless Jacob hugely, if Jacob will only allow him to do so.

How often do we quiver in terror in the storms of life?  How often do we say "God, why would you do this to me?"  I know I've spent a lot of time in the last three years asking that question.  It's the human condition, we can only see the storm we are currently battling, and not the picture that the Lord sees.  So we grumble, we whine, we tremble.

Yet, through it all, the Lord has us.  He has held the kids and I in His hands.  When there was no provision, provision found us.  When there was no safety, we were kept in his safe hands.  As I look back, I realize that even as I cried out and insisted God explain Himself, he was paving a path to blessings.

Even in the worst of times, God is there.  He knows your tears, and he wishes you to reach out in faith...and take those hard steps.

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