Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
New Sunday: Jesus Christ our Lord and God
V 28 “You shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have strive with God and with humans and have prevailed.”
Jacob has had a tumultuous life till now. His scheming and self-preserving life had brought him to a stage wherein he had to flee his father in law’s house and return to the east of the Jordan river. The last time he had fled this region was when he had cheated his brother Esau. Now, after reconciling with his brother, Jacob was back in the region he had fled years ago. Now he has to start a new life. And at this juncture, God comes to meet him, as a man who wrestled with Jacob. This is the most unusual appearance of God seen in the Bible. Yet the incident mentioned here is full of symbolism and meaning. God came seeking Jacob who had till now lived a selfish and scheming life, to transform him into a patriarch of his chosen people. This patriarch would become a man of faith. The God of Israel would subsequently be known to his people as the God of Jacob. Till now, Jacob had schemed and fled from God. That was represented by God wrestling with Jacob. But ultimately Jacob would be humbled and consequently blessed by God and become known as a patriarch of Israel. He is given the very name, Israel, which denotes a person and people who wrestle against God. In reality, that name represents each of us.
Have we been leading a life scheming and wrestling against others and God? Today, God comes to seek us. Our wrestling against God would be fruitless. Let us humble and submit ourselves to God. He has a plan and a future in store for us.
Lord, cause my rebellious heart to turn to you and listen to your voice. Help me to follow you and not the selfish desires of my heart. Amen
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
"Our heart is restless until it rests in you."
Rev. Thomas John, Carmel MTC, Boston
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church