A study in separation - Jacob, part 7
He arose that night and took his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven sons, and…sent them over the brook, and sent over what he had…Then Jacob was left alone… Genesis 32:22-24 (NKJV)
At some point or another, all of us have had one of those nights. A night when sleep is absolutely impossible. A night when our mind is spilling over with so many worries and fears that it’s all we can do to not jump right out of our own skin. As the animals can forecast the coming of natural disasters, so our soul is acutely aware that the trial of our life—perhaps even the end of our life—will come with the rising of the sun.
This is where Jacob now finds himself. After a lifetime of doing things his way, of leaning on his own resources and abilities, he realizes it’s not good enough. That all his efforts have only led him to this impending showdown with his brother Esau. Everything that seemed so right and natural, the posturing and positioning, the deceiving and conniving, the running, is now proving terribly wrong.
It’s useless to even pretend to try to sleep, so he sends his whole family over ahead of him. And it’s here in this crucible of crisis, in Jacob’s own personal (though lesser) Garden of Gethsemane, that the Bible specifically tells us, “Jacob was left alone.”
We’ve been journeying towards this very spot in Jacob’s life for the past few days. But before we got here, we had to appreciate how he got here. We had to understand the inner nature that propelled Jacob from the womb. We had to understand the unhealthy upbringing that drove him deeper and deeper into self-sufficiency. We had to understand his tendency to exploit others in order to better himself. And we had to understand his habit of running away from his problems.
With that understanding in hand, we can now appreciate what God does in this spot of solitude in Jacob’s life.
Think About It…
What does this passage reveal to me about God?
What does this passage reveal to me about myself?
Based on this, what changes do I need to make?
What is my prayer for today?