Athlete, God is Patient

Read Genesis 30:25-31:55

Talk about awkward goodbyes!  Even the final truce between Jacob and Laban feels forced. Laban surely would have made another play for Jacob's wealth and his daughters had not God decisively intervened (31:24, 29, 42).

Laban is reliant on divination to see that he has been blessed because of Jacob's presence (30:27 - did he really need divination to figure this out?), and Jacob and Rachel are not immune from such idolatry.  Even though Jacob begins to realize his need for God (30:30), he is still clinging to superstition and trickery in his last work arrangement with Laban (30:31-42). Finally, when God tells him to leave, he seems to truly grasp that it is God who has brought blessing, not magic or manipulation (31:3-13), though he is still too afraid to tell Laban that he is leaving (31:20, 31).  At the same time, Rachel is still holding on to deception and to Laban's gods (31:19, 35).

Questions for Reflection & Prayer

We are tempted to wonder how Jacob can be so slow to learn as we read about his deceptive dealings year after year.  The process leading up to conversion, as well as the process of Christian growth, are often slow. How has the Lord been patient with you?  How is He being patient with you now?  How is He calling you to be patient with others?  Take time to thank God for his patience and ask him to speed his work, by his Spirit, in your own life and in those around.

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