Knowing our Father project
God our Father allows us to struggle even with Him as He moulds us.
God gives us breakthroughs as we honor, rely and trust on God’s promises.
Then the man said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.” Jacob said, “Please tell me your name.” But he replied, “Why do you ask my name?” Then he blessed him there. So Jacob called the place Peniel, saying, “It is because I saw God face to face, and yet my life was spared.” The sun rose above him as he passed Peniel, and he was limping because of his hip.
Genesis 32:28-31 NIV
Jacob was a manipulator, liar and a cheater. Jacob literally means “supplanter” in Hebrew. He cheated his elder brother, Esau’s first born inheritance and lied to his father, Isaac to get first born blessings. He ran from Esau when he was under his death threat and went to stay with his uncle Laban only to get manipulated for years of toiling labors for him as condition to marry his daughters. Striving, manipulation and cheating begat the same treatment as what goes around comes around.
Years went by and Jacob grew increasingly afraid when Esau was coming to kill him out, he sent his servants in front and his family away whereas he stayed at the back far from harm’s way.
Alone at night, Jacob entered into a divine struggle with God with persistance till breakthough. It was a struggle of faith as to whether he could live beyond what looked like terrible adverse circumstances (Esau and 400 men rushing to meet him) and still trust God in His promise to make descendant of Abraham through him as first born.
Finally out of that struggle, God left a mark on him where he would limp the rest of his life and changed his name to Israel (Hebrew meaning Wrestled and Triumphant with God). Jacob finally found peace in God and with Esau. His limp would remind him that no matter his weaknesses, he could still trust and depend on God who was with him. God honored Jacob because he honored God, highly respected the promises of God and spiritual values despite of his own character flaws. Jacob was forever changed though that encounter. So, God was not ashamed to be called the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (the great patriarchs of faith).
And this is an important lesson for us too that in our weaknesses, Christ is our strength if we would trust and depend on Him. Phil 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthen me. How wonderful our God is!
Thank you You Heavenly Father that You love us and allow us to have our struggles in life where You mould us in our weaknesses and make us strong. Thank You for being with us and teaching us to lean and depend on You for strength. May we ever walk in Your ways we pray. In Jesus name. Amen