When was the last time you wrestled something thru with God? I am reading along in my chronological study and Gen 32 is today. As I consider all that Jacob had going on and the weighty matters on his mind (what am I going to do about all this family? my brother Esau is coming this way, where will we settle now and whats the plan going to be…) I’m just imagining alot of soul searching and questioning happening. It’s cool to notice something interesting when the caravan gets to the river and Jacob gets everyone across safely then he is left alone on the other side–and that’s when the wrestling begins in earnest.

Up until this point Jacob has been thoughtful of the Lord and even prayed to Him but he had been in the habit of addressing God as “the God of Abraham and Isaac..” he hadn’t gotten to the point of personalizing God…until the wrestle match.. and its from this time forward that Jacob addresses the Lord as “My God..” his relationship became personal–that’s huge. It’s also here where the Lord changes Jacob’s name to Israel.

What I wonder is ‘do I need to wrestle through anything today?’ what are those things, situations or whatever that I need to take to God (and stop trying to figure out on my own)…it seems that some things are harder for me to give over to His control and eventually He will wrestle them away so how much better for me to just surrender them now??? (notice that Jacob was left with a limp from his encounter)

The picture in my mind is of 2 of my kids who were wanting the same thing and both kept trying to get control by pulling and distracting the other etc–you’ve probably seem the same thing at one time:)…funny how I relate that concept with childish behavior…hmmm
might be a good analogy here too. It is spiritually immature of me to continue to try and control something that I really need to give to God. Maybe I need to grow up and let go….just a thought

I wonder how many of us need a face to face with the Lord??? Jacob said “I have met the Lord face to face” ..and he was never the same from that point(not perfect mind you–just read the next couple of chapters but still different) Remember that we can encounter God at any time and place—if we seek Him, He will be found. My challenge for you and me today is to get face to face with the Lord and let go of anything that we have been hanging on to….at our house when the kids would get into wrestle etc we would say “it’s always fun until someone gets hurt” as a warning that they thought they wanted to be wrestling but it didn’t always turn out so great for everyone–but sometimes there were just those things that they had to learn for themselves. We are still the same way. If there is something that’s holding you back from spiritual growth–wrestle through it with Him. if there is something that you’re hanging on to that is holding you back, skip the wrestling and give it to God.

You and I will never be the same from encounters with Him!


2012—MORE (but not the redzone)

Just like many of you I have spent portions of today reflecting on 2011 (many other portions I have been watching football!) At one point this afternoon while watching football with Jeff and Riley, I noticed that I kept being confused. I would be watching for Tebow to make a play or for a certain team to score–only to realize that it was a completely different game on. Apparently we weren’t watching 1 game, we were watching the RedZone which takes you back and forth to all different games as things heat up in each game. This seemed to be fine with the guys, but I was in a constant state of confusion (which they found hilarious)…it did make me laugh and draw some parallels to this past year though.

How often was my life happening so quickly that as I reacted to one thing the circumstances changed and just as I figured out 1 plan of action the opponents switched on me???? now this may just be a sign of my stage of life (or my age) but it is also sort of indicative of our culture. It is a hurry up and keep your eyes opened world we live in. If we blink we just might miss something. I finally decided today to just wait and get the final scores on the games of interest before I got too caught up in every game. Maybe I don’t have to keep up with everything. Maybe it’s ok to pick and choose what I spend my time and energy on so that i don’t get distracted by the inconsequential.

In 2011 I read through the Bible chronologically and over and over as I asked God to teach me from His Word I continually heard Him say “Just know me” and so that was my goal. As I stand at the threshold of 2012 and I hear from others what their goals are for the year or what their ‘word’ of the year is (these are all good things) I keep coming back to the word MORE. As God called me to know him better last year and as he revealed himself to me like never before, I find myself just wanting more and more of that. If I have to pick a word for the year I’m going with MORE and my goal for the year is to get More of Jesus.

Isn’t it cool that the more we know Him the more we want to know Him???? (who else can you say that about??)

That’s it for me. To know Him MORE and MORE until I develop the mind of Christ. (and I probably won’t watch the RedZone anymore!)

My prayer for you and me both is that we crave the Word and desire to know Him better and better in 2012. Nothing satisfies like Jesus. Taste and see that the Lord is good:)

what’s your word or goal for the new year???