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Manning Up

Manning Up

Genesis 31:41b-42a

“I served you fourteen years for your two daughters, and six years for your flock, and you have changed my wages ten times. If the God of my father … had not been on my side, surely now you would have sent me away empty-handed.”

Jacob’s finally reached his breaking point. For twenty years, he’s been living in a love/hate marital triangle with two competing wives, instigated by their crook of a father, and he’s ready for a change. So he ties up his laces, gathers his family in tote, and makes a daring escape in Genesis 31. But Laban, getting wind of the rouse, hops on his horse and catches up to the renegades somewhere up the road. I must admit: this is the face-off I’ve been waiting for! It’s a title bout between two heavyweights: an oppressed Patriarch in one corner, an offended father-in-law in the other. But while the fleshy part of me wants Jacob to give this old crook the pummeling he deserves, the spiritual part of me marvels at his equanimity. Any man can confront an enemy with rage. Only a truly strong man uses restraint.    

“If God is for us, who can be against us?”, writes Paul in Romans 8:31. So let’s cling to that truth for courage and calmness before our own foes today.