Drama seems to follow Jacob everywhere. Maybe some of you guys can relate. Esau. Isaac. Rachel. Leah. Laban. When is he going to get a break?
For the first time Jacob acknowledges God’s hand in the events of his life. God sightings are everywhere as he recounts his ongoing struggle with Laban. Jacob sees himself as an innocent victim, a pawn in the hands of his diabolical father-in-law. He sees his actions as totally legit, and if not for God’s intervention, he would be without wives or children, homeless and penniless. Yet we’ve followed Jacob’s journey. While it’s true that God has been working behind the scenes providing for and protecting Jacob, most if not all of his troubles are of his own doing…deceit, manipulation, cheating, lying, partiality.
Laban paints himself out to be a nice guy. According to him, he loves his daughters and is generous to a fault. He’s really the victim as his flocks and herds have been “stolen” and his daughters and grandchildren kidnapped. Not at all the Laban that we know.
Like Jacob and Laban, many of us also have a very different view of ourselves than what others perceive. Sometimes we see ourselves as the hero in the story, while others see us as the villain. We are totally justified in our responses. Conflict isn’t our fault…we are just addressing the wrongs done to us in totally appropriate ways, right? Whatever anger we display is righteous anger, and whatever consequence we receive is undeserved. Yeah, right.
Sometimes it’s the other way around. Others see the good in us, but all we can see is our failures. Both views are from a very earthy perspective. And both views impact both our own sense of self-worth and the way we interact with others.
But God sees us from a very different perspective. He sees us as His image-bearers. That means we have infinite value. Each and every one of us. God sees and God hears…and God cares. If you don’t know Him, today is the day. He’s gone to incredible lengths in His pursuit of you. He’s sent His Son, the One He promised way back in Genesis 3.15 would crush the head of the serpent, giving His life in the process to pay the penalty for our rebellion and provide the way back to a relationship with our Creator God.
If you do know Him, then you are His child, a son or daughter of the King. That is what defines you. It means that you don’t have to look for self-worth in relationships or titles or jobs or school or accomplishments or things…all will let you down eventually. Your worth is far more precious than that. It means you can say no to things…people, temptations, situations…that attempt to redefine you. God is faithful. We see Him working in Jacob’s life behind the scenes. He’s working in your life too.
I pray that we might get a small glimpse of the way God sees us this week…unlimited value and unlimited potential…because if we did, it would change everything.
Until next time…stay salty.