Date: Friday, June 6
Scripture: Genesis 31:1-21
Verse: I am the God of Bethel, where you anointed a sacred pillar and where you made a solemn promise to me. Now, get up and leave this country and go back to the land of your relatives. (Genesis 31:13)
Many, if not all of us, know what it is like to be betrayed. Friends, who said they would stand by us in any situation, begin talking about us behind our backs. Supervisors who have promised to go to bat for us for the promotion and/or raise, lose their nerve and keep quiet. Spouses to whom we have given our lives prove untrustworthy. Children we have tirelessly tried to raise, choose to disconnect from the rest of the family. It can be incredibly painful.
Jacob had put in a lot of time building a relationship with his father-in-law, Laban. He had worked hard for him for seven years, but when the time came for Jacob to marry Rachel, the love of his life, Laban instead gave him Leah as his bride. So Jacob gave Laban another seven years in order to marry Rachel. Jacob had been successful in caring for Laban’s wealth, and in the process has made a good living for himself. But now he seems to have overstayed his welcome. Laban and his family have become jealous and are beginning to suggest Jacob has dealt with them dishonestly. So God comes to Jacob and tells him the time has come to go home. God reminds him of the vision he received at Bethel (see yesterday’s devo), where God had repeated his constant faithfulness, and Jacob promised to walk with God.
Today’s reading is the story of two different relationships. Jacob’s relationship with Laban looked great on the outside, but then Laban betrays Jacob. God, on the other hand, has been patient and has been at work fulfilling the promise he made to Jacob before he ever met Laban. While his relationship with Laban has been all about what he can do for Laban, his relationship with God has been about what God can do for him, and God has shown himself faithful to Jacob for the long haul.
And so it is with us. We may have been betrayed by the people around us, but God will never abandon us. He promises to be with us through it all. We simply need to remain faithful to him and his promises.
Prayer: Remind me, gracious God, that you will never abandon me. Amen.
Action: Reflect on God’s constant love for you, even when you have betrayed his trust.
Respond: Have you ever overstayed your welcome?
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