Now Jacob looked up and saw Esau coming, and four hundred men with him. So he divided the children among Leah and Rachel and the two maids. He put the maids with their children in front, then Leah with her children, and Rachel and Joseph last of all. He himself went on ahead of them, bowing himself to the ground seven times, until he came near his brother. – Genesis 33:1-3 NRSV
Look at all that energy Jacob went through just to protect his immediate family. Where did his trust in God go – where does my trust go when I am faced with such a reality as death? Sad part is that I remember all too well when I let my devotions slip and my prayer life was pretty much at meal times. How ready do you think I was when those distant troubles became my crises and sudden overwhelming problem. Oh, did I ever rush out to God for help. I heard that this is described as a foxhole kind of Christianity.
But the Jews who were in Susa gathered on the thirteenth day and on the fourteenth, and rested on the fifteenth day, making that a day of feasting and gladness. Therefore the Jews of the villages, who live in the open towns, hold the fourteenth day of the month of Adar as a day for gladness and feasting, a holiday on which they send gifts of food to one another. – Esther 9:18-19 NRSV
Like I said, nothing really gets our attention like the reality of death. So on their knees and fasting went thousand of people – what did God do? – He honoured their hope in Him and saved them. So this celebration called Purim was instituted. Why? Something else I do along with forgetting my devotions and prayers, I forget to celebrate God’s amazing miracles in my life. Do I remember that when I pass from this life that I will be celebrating the happiest day in my life? Should that not encourage me and motivate me to spend more time with my Saviour, my hope, and to rejoice more than mourn?
Imagine how stoked I was to see Paul pull out Abraham’s life in Romans —
Hoping against hope, he believed that he would become “the father of many nations,” according to what was said, “So numerous shall your descendants be.” He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was already[b] as good as dead (for he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb. No distrust made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, being fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. Therefore his faith[c] “was reckoned to him as righteousness.” – Romans 4:18-22 NRSV
Lord, like Abraham I want to ground my faith on hope. You are my God who will be and do what You promise to be and do.