Wednesday, June 22, 2011

I will Praise the Lord

I am doing three different devotions right now.  Two will take a year and the other will take three.  I am enjoying the time each morning reading the Word enormously. 

This morning for my last reading I was in Genesis 27-29.  This is where Rebecca and Jacob deceive Isaac for the blessing.  As I began reading, I could feel that I was rushing; I have read this so many times before.  So I stopped myself and prayed that the Lord would reveal to me something new, then resumed at a slower pace.

God is so good!  It wasn’t until the very last verse of today’s passage, but there it was.

She conceived again, and when she gave birth to a son she said, “This time I will praise the LORD.” So she named him Judah. Then she stopped having children.

Genesis 29:35 showed me something new.  Jacob has married sisters Leah and Rachel.  Jacob plainly prefers the younger sister over Leah, who was only married off through the deception of her father; Leah is the first to bear children as consolation for her lot in life.  She has Reuben and says, “Surely my husband will love me now.”  Next she says that because she is unloved, she birthed Simeon.  Levi was born and she said, “Now at last my husband will become attached to me…”

There is desperation here.  She is defined by her unloved status.  Then comes the final verse.  There is a marked change here.  Her focus has shifted, at least for the moment, from Jacob to the Lord.  She stops looking at what she has-not, and praises the Lord.

What a mighty message!  When we seek fulfillment from other humans, we will be disappointed in a very personal way.  It affects how we see ourselves.  Leah actually calls herself and considers herself to factually be UNLOVED.  She owns this as her defining identity.  UNLOVED. 

People let us down.  They are flawed and fickle and circumstantial.  God is faithful and unchanging.  And He is love.  If we can only remember to seek our identity in Him, we would be saved from ever owning the ‘unloved’ status.

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