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El Shaddai

El Shaddai

Genesis 43:14

“May God Almighty grant you mercy before the man, and may he send back your other brother and Benjamin. And as for me, if I am bereaved of my children, I am bereaved.”

Jacob’s been here before, hasn’t he? As he packs cart-loads of his finest gifts, hoping to woo this Egyptian overlord into delivering Benjamin back safely, I wonder if his mind flashes back to that stressful night in the wilderness where he loaded up similar carts for Esau. Have the long, hard years of mourning Joseph’s loss caused him to forget the way God showed him extravagant mercy back then? But that re-uniting with Esau is just a foretaste of a greater reuniting. That joyful weeping is just a drop in the bucket to a coming flood. That bear-hug with a long-lost brother is nothing to the bear-hug with a long-lost son soon to come.

Friend, Jacob’s seen a lot in his lifetime. He knows first-hand that God is a mighty God. But as he watches Judah and Benjamin disappear over the horizon, the best he can pray is effectively, “God Almighty! If it’s not too much to ask, please don’t bereave me of another son!” Which means he hasn’t seen anything yet!