Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Lessons from Genesis 24

Genesis 24 was where I was studying earlier today. It is a long chapter detailing the circumstances of how Isaac (Abraham's son) got his wife - Rebekah. For some it is a familiar story - for others, unknown. It is worth a second... or first... look!! It is a great narrative of how God demonstrates His faithfulness, sovereignty and guidance in His children's lives.

Long story - short version here:
Abraham is growing older - he is just now a widower. His wife Sarah has died and he has just buried her. He is concerned for his son, Isaac. He wants Isaac to have a wife from their own people, and so he employs one of his faithful servants with the task of finding a wife for him. Abraham makes the servant swear that he will find a wife from Abraham's people and not from the land from which he originally came. The servant agrees.

As the servant heads out to find a wife for Isaac, he stops at a well to water his camels. He then stops and prays, asking God to specifically identify Isaac's future wife by the way that she would respond to his asking for water. She would not only give him water, but also water the camels. With this short prayer he watches the women come to the well.

He sees Rebekah, who is very beautiful - and he runs over to her asking for a drink. She quickly gives him a drink, and then states that she will also water the camels. She then quickly empties her jar into the trough, runs and refills her jar and then proceeds to make sure the camels have enough water to drink. (I just love the emphasis in scripture on how quickly everybody is moving - its kind of interesting!)

The servant then proceeds to give her some bracelets and rings - basically asking her if she would like to be Isaac's wife - and she runs off to tell her mother these things. He then immediately bows down and worships God, praising Him for all that He has done in response to his prayer. He is invited to Laban's house (Rebekah's brother) and is invited to have dinner with the family.

Before he takes a bite he stops to testify about what has taken place and ask what they think about the prospect of Rebekah becoming Isaac's wife. This of course leads to them asking Rebekah if she wanted this, which she did, and then announcing their blessing on it.

(Okay - so it wasn't the short version! )

What are some lessons that I pulled away from this mornings study? Here they are:
  1. Bathe everything in prayer & then act in faith. The servant prayed before interacting with any of the girls at the well. He was dependent on God. I need to have that kind of dependence!
  2. Remember to praise God for His answers to prayer. The servant stopped and immediately gave thanks to God for His answer to specific prayer. How often do I demonstrate ungratefulness by not taking time to recognize God's answers to my prayers?
  3. Testify of God's goodness & working in my life. The servant recounted the whole story - not leaving any details out - of how God brought him to this point of asking for Rebekah to go back with him to marry Isaac. The people around the table had an opportunity to rejoice in the goodness of God too! I need to proclaim the working of God in my life - so that others are encouraged by His working!

One other thing from the end of Chapter 24. It mentions Isaac going out in the fields in the evening and meditating. The spiritual discipline of meditation is a unused discipline in many Christian's life. I have been challenged lately to increase this discipline - perhaps more next time on how & what that looks like in a believer's life.

Until then, God bless (and keep the java hot!).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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