As I wrote yesterday about walking with God, I was reminded of Jacob wrestling with an angel. The story is found in Genesis chapter 32, from verse 23 to the end of the chapter.
I re-read the story this morning and am smiling as I take a few notes:
- “In the course of the night …” My biggest struggles with God have certainly been “in the night,” in the dark times.
- “Jacob was left there alone.” Again, these struggles come when I feel most alone.
- “Then some man wrestled with him …” You know, it often feels like my struggle is against “a man” or a person or a situation in my life. But eventually I come to realize that the REAL struggle is spiritual, and with God. He is asking something of me and I wrestle with it, with Him.
- “But Jacob said, ‘I will not let you go until you bless me.'” Perseverance. Seeking blessing. Refusing to give up until you receive what only God can give, even though the pain at the moment is great.
- “… you have contended with divine and human beings and have prevailed …” and “Jacob limped along because of his hip.” Jacob wrestled with an angel! This is explicitly stated in Hosea 12:5. The angel told Jacob he had prevailed, but the victory wasn’t without cost. Jacob was left with a limp, a reminder of the struggle.
I am reflecting on all of this. I realized yesterday that I really am willing in my mind and my heart to do anything God asks, but sometimes it takes a while to figure out what … or with Whom … I am struggling. This time it isn’t the “dream” I’m giving up that is difficult. The difficulty is my feelings about the unfairness of this situation and wanting to make a point or “win the argument.”
I suspect that moving forward, I’ll continue to struggle with resentment as I watch things happen I didn’t want. But those “things” are just a limp I’m left with. God has blessed me, and has told me, “Walk with me.”