Unworthy and afraid.
Jacob recognizes that he is not deserving of the kindness God has shown him, acknowledging that God is the source of everything good in his life. (vs.10) He confesses that he is terrified of his circumstances. (vs.11) And he reminds God – as he reminds himself – of the promise he received. (vs.12)
Instead of panicking, as he’s done in the past, he takes logical action. (vs.7-8) Instead of collapsing into a distressed heap, he prays. Instead of accusing God of being out to get him, he humbles himself. Instead of giving power to circumstances his beyond control, he puts his hope fully in the power of God.
What a great prototype.
Today, racial tension is higher than it has been for decades. Lawlessness abounds. Entitlement has become a value. Terror no longer has borders. And the patriotism we’ve seen in history – the type we saw in the days following the 9/11 attacks – is a too-distant memory. Our country is in a battle to redefine itself and, like Jacob, I’m afraid.
But if I follow Jacob’s lead, I take logical action where I can and acknowledge that everything good in my life comes from God’s kindness. I humble myself and pray; putting my hope fully in the power of God. And I claim his promise from Deuteronomy 31:8…
“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
When I follow Jacob’s lead, it’s amazing how peace rushes in.