My summary of what I have learned from the story of Jacob would not be complete without touching on the eternal perspectives that this story demonstrates to me.
It took Jacob many years, and many ups and downs, for him to get to that place where he could find peace in God, and see all his children growing and multiplying. As I’ve shared in part 1, part 2, and part 3, there were many instances where Jacob did not know if or how God would come through for him, or how his life and those of his children would be saved. However, even where Jacob’s vision was limited, God still had a grand, eternal plan that he was working out. From the twelve sons of Jacob (whose name was later changed to Israel), the entire nation of Israel was formed. God used Jacob, and his sons to fulfill the promise he made to Abraham. Even more significant for us today, Jesus, our savior and redeemer had his earthly lineage from one of the sons of Jacob.
God can raise us from dust to glory because he has a plan and purpose that is bigger than our selves
God worked through the life of Jacob, molding him from a cheat and a liar into the patriarch that one of the most famous nations in the world would be known by. Despite all the mistakes and errors made, Jesus, the son of God came to earth through Jacob and his descendants. This teaches me that God is looking to do more than to just bless, heal, and restore us. Indeed, God cares deeply for us at an individual level, but beyond individual needs, there is always something that God is working out. For his bride the church, and for this world at large. I find it exciting to think that I am part of a grand plan and purpose that will not only affect me, but those around me, and even those that will come after me. Truly God’s ways are not our ways, and his thoughts are not our thoughts.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LordIsaiah 55:8-9
God operates beyond the natural and the things we see. While Jacob only saw what was happening around him, God had the bigger picture in mind. God saw from the very beginning, the redemption of Jacob and his family from hunger through his son, Joseph. And even beyond that, God had already planned for the redemption of the world through Jesus, who would be born into the tribe of Judah that came from Jacob’s second son.
Depending on the season we are currently in, sometimes it is difficult to see how God will work it out or even how he can use what we are going through to help or bless someone else. But Jacob’s story encourages me today. I don’t need to clearly see or understand what I am going through, but I can find rest in God. I can lay it in his hands and know that it will all make sense in the end. If I allow him to, he will not only work it out, but he will mold it into something that manifests his glory beyond me, to every other life that he wills, over all the earth.
That’s how great our God is. He is the God of eternal promise. And yet, even as he sees eternity, he sees each tear that falls. He remains our comforter and friend, an ever present help in times of need.
You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.Psalm 56:8
As God takes care of us and leads us through every season, he also works through our circumstances to bring his eternal promises to pass. My prayer today is that I, like Jacob, may learn to fully yield to him, and be one of the many that he uses to manifest his plans on this earth.
May God continue to use us to manifest all the plans he has for this earth!