Then Jacob said, “O God of my father Abraham and God of my father Isaac, the Lord who said to me, ‘Return to your country and to your family. and I will deal well with you’: I am not worthy of the least of all of the mercies and of all the truth which You have shown your servant; (Genesis 32:9-10a NKJV)
Jacob was about to go see Esau again. 20 years had passed but time has not healed the painful wounds that had resulted from Jacob taking Esau’s birthright and his blessings. Previously, Esau had vowed to kill Jacob as soon as Isaac died and now Jacob is stricken with fear. His fear immediately brings a response, a Godly response, which is to pray. He immediately appeals to God in his distress, and cries out to Him on the basis that He is God alone, and Jacob is “not worthy of the least of all the mercies and all of the truth” that God has given and shown to Him. Suddenly, God is magnified and Jacob is reduced to what He is and what I am, a sinner desperately in need of His mercy and His truth.
This week was a very difficult and discouraging week. I had just learned that my company was going to be cutting 13,000 more jobs off the payroll in 2010 and the tension in the workplace was so thick that it seemed as if you could cut it with a knife. Unlike Jacob’s response to immediately pray, instead of taking my burdens and concerns before God in unselfish prayer, I instead reacted with fear and selfishness. To make matters worse, I also took it all home with me, and very selfishly took out out my fears and anger on the people most important to me, my wife and my two children.
When will I ever learn? When will I ever truly get it? Just like in Jacob’s prayer, I also am not worthy of the least of all of the mercies and all of the truth that He has shown me. I am a sinner, saved by grace alone. I constantly struggle between my old sinful nature and my new nature. As much as I love Jesus and as much as I long to see Him face to face, my old nature is not the least fit to stand before God. That is why God has given me, in His merciful love and His infinite grace, a new nature. The old one cannot be repaired. It is dead. Why do I keep bringing that which is dead to life?
O merciful Lord, my beautiful and righteous God, Prince of Peace and Lord of all creation, would you magnify yourself in me and through me? Make yourself so big in my life that I cannot even think of turning anywhere else but to you, not just in the fearful and dark moments, but in the joyous moments, too. I am not deserving of your love God, but you continuously pour out your mercy, grace and love to overflowing in my heart and you even use my sin, my fear and my selfish pride as ways to bring glory to yourself. You are so beautiful. So wonderful. So totally and completely awesome!
Teach me your ways that I may know you and find favor in your sight. I want to know you more and more, every day of my life. I want my life to reflect a life of intimacy and love towards you. Lord, help me be disciplined in my response to difficulties and trials in life and help me to focus and trust in you for all things and immediately seek you first in everything. Even when you do this, and my excitement begins to fade after you give me victories in my life, do not allow my passion, excitement and commitment to fade away. Make my abounding joy in finding and being found in you! Set my eyes on you and use the days you have given me and make them fruitful!
Thank you for loving me so much. Thank you for being merciful and good. Thank you for orchestrating all the circumstances in my life, yes, ALL circumstances, even the painful ones, as part of your master plan that you are beautifully and masterfully weaving together for your glory and for my good.
I love you so much, Jesus!