Today’s reading comes from Genesis 30-31. Before reading I invite you to pray and asked God to speak to you as you read his word.
What hides in your family tree? Are there things in it that you are not completely proud of? Have people done some pretty detestable things? Affairs, arrests, alcoholism, prostitution, quarrels, murder, jealousy, and so many other things you try hard to forget about? No matter what has been hidden away … I wander if your family tree looks as sordid as Jacobs does?
Yesterday we first encountered the family tree Jacob has birthed. It began with sons born to his first wife Leah. Today we see that the wife he loved, whose womb was closed gives her maidservant to Jacob to give her children. When Leah sees that she is not having kids of her own she gives her own maidservant to Jacob to have children for her. In the heat of this back and forth, Leah turns to selling herself for her husbands affection when she sells to Rachel’s her sons mandrakes. She has more children and then finally Rachel’s womb opens and she has a son.
Friends this is an incredibly sordid family that is beginning. The cat fights and the back and forth would make any polygamist family today embarrassed. But here is the cool thing, no matter how much strife was taking place; God was using it for his kingdom. It is through Jacob that the promise God made to Abraham that his decedents would be numerous really begins to explode. Not only does Jacob’s family explode in number but God blesses him with material wealth. Again this blessing comes through some suspicious means, but God uses it for his purposes.
I do not know what is in your family history or even your own personal history, but remember this, no matter what is there, God’s grace, God’s love, and God’s mercy can and has cleansed you of it. God has a purpose for you. If you have found salvation at baptism, and the Holy Spirit now dwells in you, you have been justified, considered 100% righteous in the eyes of God. If you want a full explanation of that, see this earlier post. God can use you and has plans to use you no matter what guilt you carry around. So remove that guilt and turn towards him a little lighter and follow his lead.