Jacob’s Free fall

We know why Jacob was frightened to meet up again with his broth Esau (*hint: he was responsible for stealing his birthright, thereby changing the coures of Esau’s history as well as his own).

We know what Jacob did to prepare his family for that meeting between Esau and his 400 men and his family: he divided his people, servants, wives, flocks into 2 groups, thinking to himself, “If Esau attacks one group, surely he won’t attack the other.”

And we know who Jacob trusted in while his hands still shook at the prospect of meeting with his brother, who had every reason to exact revenge upon him. Jacob spoke to God, saying, “You have blessed me with more than I could imagine and he you are instructing me to go back to the land of my forefathers, with the promise in mind that you will make me prosper and my descendants too numerous to count {knee tremble}. Please protect me and my family.”

After this prayer, jacob selected the follwoing gifts for his brother Esau:
-200 female goats
-20 male goats
-200 ewes
-20 rams
-30 female camels and their young
-40 cows
-10 bulls
-20 female donkeys
-10 male donkeys

Putting these things in the care of his servants, he instructed them to go ahead of him, keeping some space between the herds, he told the servant at the front of the procession that when he is approched by Esau, that he is to explain that they are Jacob’s and that they are being sent ahead as a gift for Esau.

Jacob stayed in camp that night and got up with his 2 wives, 2 maidservants and 11 sons to cross the ford of the Jabbok. He sent them over the stream, as well as all of his possessions and Scripture says, “So Jacob was left alone and a man wrestled him till daybreak.”

We see that Jacob spent this night wrestling and clinging with this angel of the Lord and upon daybreak received a blessing and a name change.

I want to hone in here, though, on a point that may get overlooked: he sent his family and his possessions ahead of him and he was alone. One of the only things that he could call his own–his family–the very part of the gift that God himself had promised to him. There was absolutely nothing for Jacob to fall back on if this thing with Esau and now here with the angel didn’t go well.

This is an incredible example for me. God has been stripping me down, so to speak over the last 2 years, tangible things I once possessed are gone, family is far, but I don’t want it any other way. Those things I used to fall back on are just that: things. But when I do my free fall into the arms of my Savior, I can see big things happen, I can see my faith grow, my reliance upon Him grow and His gifts in me grow. I don’t dare decline to cross that stream in front of me.

Have you been stripped of anything lately and can you see God filling in the gaps? It may not happen without some wrestling first…

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