Hello everyone 🙂 ok so you know when you have a backlog of things to write about and you have already done some thumbnails for them but you haven’t yet created the time because of new things in your life? Yep that would be me (hahahahahaha). But two things before I get into what I really want to write about:
- I have always been a writer. I remember growing up and my parents would upset me or I would be sad, then I would write everything down. It wasn’t a journal or anything. I. Just. Felt. The. Need. To. Write. Recently, I met a pastor with a couple of friends and he prophesied into my life about my writing and I thought to myself, ‘Wow Lord, so you actually watch the silliness I do? Hahahahaha’ But on a more serious note, that confirmation touched me and lifted my spirit. Basically, God cares about those little things that we take for granted. It is sooooooo amazing to know that He does.
- Secondly, I chatted with a Pastor friend of mine on July 31st 2016 and he talked about not reading anything about my adventures. I knew that that was God telling me I hadn’t written anything in a while that He wants me to write about, even though I had made the thumbnails for them (covers face). I am sorry. These aren’t necessary my adventures, but the things God talks to me about are of great importance to me. I learn a lot and I always want to share it with people 🙂 So, I can give excuses for why I haven’t written in a while (e.g. law school) but deep down, I know the real reason 🙂 So I am going to try and create the time and write more 🙂
On that note, I pray this helps even if it is just a single person or touches someone, Amen.
Have you ever wondered what it means to wrestle with God? I don’t. My prayers are usually short and straight to the point, except if I am worshipping Him or I am getting ready to fight a war (don’t ask), then I go all out because I want my voice and my words to reach the heaven. But I have never really wrestled with God; stripped of my strength, baring my soul to Him, asking Him to bless me before I let Him go, going all night seeking His face? No, I have never really done that. I recently read a post about Christians being apathetic and it got me thinking, ‘Jacob wrestled with God’…do you have any idea what it means to wrestle with the King of kings and Lord of lords?
Gen 32 portrays how Jacob fought with God. Earlier on, he had been praying to God about meeting his brother Esau, years after cunning him out of his birthright. He prayed and planned on how he was going to meet his brother. Doubt played in his mind as he planned and strategized how he was going to encounter his brother in case his brother hadn’t still forgiven him. In the midst of this doubt, he prayed, telling God what He had promised him and that He said He would deal well with him (verse 9). And then nightfall came, and he separated himself, was left alone and that was when he encountered a Man, and he wrestled him until daybreak. First of all, his former prayers were in the midst of his people, but this prayer, this fight was different. He was alone. He needed no distractions, no worry, he needed to be bare before he encountered the King of Kings; it was between him and ‘this Man’. Secondly, he fought with ‘this Man’ from nightfall till daybreak…do you know what it means for someone to fight from nightfall till daybreak? Jacob was relentless and he must have been really tired.
Then, ‘this Man’ says, ‘Let Me go, for the day breaks’ (verse 26). Now this verse touched me. I have been struggling with waking up and saying Hi to my father in the morning (don’t mind me, I love my sleep). But the prayers you have in the mornings are so important. The prayers you have before the beginning of the day and you are distracted and overcome by what the world requires of us to do.
Psalm 5:3, ‘my voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.
Proverbs 8: 17, ‘I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me”
But most importantly, it shows that you are willing to meet God at the hour when your body is lethargic, as your spirit is willing. You are creating that time to converse with God. You are ready to set the day before your Father and your Friend. ‘This Man’, recognized that Jacob was about to face the challenges the world had to offer. ‘This Man’, recognized that Jacob was going to be distracted by his wives, maidservants, children and the arrival of his brother. When ‘this Man’ saw that He was not going to prevail against Jacob, He touched the socket of his hip; and the socket of Jacob’s hip was out of joint as He wrestled with him (Verse 25). But still Jacob persisted…isn’t it weird that ‘this Man’ only touched the hip of Jacob and didn’t punch or twist it…but simply touched it. But Jacob says boldly, ‘I will not let You go unless You bless me” (what audacity? Imagine this puny human, and he gave ‘this Man’ a condition for releasing him, ‘unless You bless me’). But…in the midst of all this, Jacob was determined that he wasn’t going to let go until he was blessed. He didn’t care that he was in excruciating pain, tired from fighting all night. He was not letting go.
‘This Man’ then asks Jacob his name, and changes his name to Israel, from that of the supplanter, the cunning one to one who prevails with God. Meaning of prevail you ask, to defeat an opponent especially in a long or difficult contest. Synonyms – persuade, induce, win someone over, influence, pressure someone into etc. Verse 28, ‘And He said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel; for you have struggled with God and with men, and have prevailed” – you have defeated an opponent in this long or difficult contest. You have won me over. ‘This Man’, had no option but to bless Jacob because the day was about to break. They had fought through out the night, Jacob had fought with Him and was not going to let go; Jacob had been overly persistent. Luke 11:5-10 says,
5 And he said unto them, which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves; 6 For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him? 7 And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. 8 I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth. 9 And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. 10 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
I love the word, importunity (new word = score). It means a plea that is so persistent or demanding that it becomes annoying. This was Jacob; because of his importunity ‘this Man’ was willing and ready to bless him. Jacob had won God over. And that leads us to the next verse, verse 29 when he asked ‘this Man’ saying “Tell me Your name, I pray.” And ‘this Man’ responds, “Why is it that you ask about My name?” And He blessed him there. Now this question perplexed me; why not just tell Jacob your name? Now you see, when someone keeps asking you for something, you can get annoyed as shown in Luke 11:5-10 above. So this question can be seen as a reproof. However, how about if ‘this Man’ did not want to make it known yet that He was the Son of Man in the flesh because it wasn’t yet His time?
Bear with me, bear with me. I know some of you might be wondering, ‘what is this young woman on about?’ Follow me. Jacob realizes that this is a divine being, but does not call Him Lord. This passage keeps referring to Him as The Man. Why? Abraham was able to recognize that of the three men that came to visit him, the Lord was amongst them, and the other two were angels who then went on to Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 18 and 19). In Luke 1:10 -20, it was noted that it was the Angel of the Lord, Angel Gabriel who appeared to Zechariah and made him mute. Even in Judges 13, which talks about the birth of Samson, in verse 6, ‘so the woman came and told her husband saying, ‘a Man of God came to me, and His countenance was like the countenance of the Angel of God, very awesome; but I did not ask Him where He was from and He did not tell me His name.” Samson’s mother, even though she pondered on the name of this being, she knew it was the Angel of God and not God Himself. So why wasn’t ‘this Man; that was before Jacob regarded as ‘Lord’ or ‘an angel’, why ‘this Man?’ How about, if this was an encounter between Jesus the Messiah and Jacob? Genesis 49 talks about Jacob’s, now known as Israel, last words to his sons, and in verse 10 it says,
“The scepter shall not depart from Judah, Nor a lawgiver from between his feet, Until Shiloh comes”
Here, Jacob was prophesying the coming of Jesus, who will be of the lineage of Judah. In addition, Shiloh is sometimes regarded as a prophetic name for the Messiah. So how about if this fight was an encounter between Jacob and the Messiah, Shiloh…Jesus? And finally, Jacob (Israel) knew and understood who ‘this Man’, who this divine being who came to visit him was. Also, in Hosea 12:3-5, it talks about Jacob and his fight with God, and finally in verse 5, it is revealed the name of ‘this Man’,
‘That is, the Lord God of hosts. The Lord is His memorable name.’
(kapush = mind blown)
(Genesis 32:30&31) So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel:[c] “For I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.” 31 Just as he crossed over Penuel[d] the sun rose on him, and he limped on his hip.
At this moment, God departed from him. From this moment, Jacob referred to ‘this Man’ as God as realization dawns on him. As he says his last word to his sons later on in the bible, he realizes what part of the trinity this God is. He realized that he had seen the face of God and he was still alive. However, as the sun rose, signalling God’s depart, Jacob limped on his hip. Forever a reminder that he had seen God face to face and survived so as not to boast of his own might, so that in his weakness, God’s strength can be shown, just like Paul (2 Corinthians).
Hmmmmm, wrestling with God. I do not know of any physical wrestle with God in this new day and age (personally, I would be like, ‘God…my Father, nah’). But we can wrestle with God in prayer; persuading him to bless you beyond reasonable doubt (and law school creeps in). Seeking His face from nightfall till daybreak. Stripping yourself bare of all distractions, worry, pain, sorrow. Coming to Him as you are and not letting go. Making it to be that God has to bless you before you let Him go. Submitting every single part of your being to him. Being vulnerable, being bare. Being completely and utterly desperate for His grace, His mercy, His favour. Jacob was a really cunning man; he got a birthright that wasn’t his. But God still poured His favour on him. Jacob had sought after God with every fibre of his being (literally). God could have simply said a word, and Jacob would have been obliterated, as all He had to do was touch, not punch or hit, Jacob’s hip socket to dislocate it. God had to tell Jacob to let Him go. Do you know what it means for the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords, to tell a puny human to let Him go? Sometimes we are so caught up in the world; caught up in what it tells us we are not, caught up in what it tells us that we cannot do, caught up in it telling us that God does not love us, that we forget who we truly are. God made us in His own image and likeness (Genesis 1:27), God wants to communicate with us and have a relationship with us, just like a father has with his son, just like a friend has with a friend. If we weren’t made in His own image and likeness, do you think Jacob would have been able to wrestle with God? God wants more from us than mere apathetic, timid lives. God wants us to wrestle with Him in what we want according to His will. God wants us to face the world head on with courage that surpasses all human understanding. God wants us to be bold. After wrestling with God, do you think Jacob would have been scared or frightened of anything that came his way? He said ‘For I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.” (Genesis 32:30).
It is time that we as Christians stop living apathetic lives in our Christian walk. It is time we get bold and not pray mere lazy prayers stating that God knows what I want, He will bless me. Of course He does, He is God. But He doesn’t want you to be lazy. He wants to converse with you. He wants to see some fire in your belly. It is time to be bold like Jacob. It is time that God sees that yearning, that longing, that need, that courage to get in the same ring with Him and say, ‘Lord, I am not leaving until you bless me. I am not leaving until You heal my land. I am not leaving until You grant me peace. I am not leaving until You grant Christians of the world courage to face what is coming. Lord…I am not leaving because I have a desperate longing and yearning for You. I know that I might leave with battle scars, but I know that in my weakness, there will You show Your strength (2 Corinthians 12:9-11).’ As Christians, it is time to show the world what we are truly made of, in boldness that can only be gotten from the Lord. Amen.
As usual, I hope this touches someone’s spirit, and remember, that no matter what you are going through, God truly and really loves you ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ 🙂 Don’t let anyone tell you anything different. Kisses and hugs 🙂