Dear Heavenly Father,

Praise

I praise you today for your compassion. You saw that Leah was unloved, and you enabled her to have children. Not only did she have the honor of mothering the priestly (Levi) and royal (Judah) tribes of Israel, she was ultimately the mother of Jesus Christ, who Himself embodies both roles (Heb 7:11–22). I worship you today! You give the barren woman a household, making her the joyful mother of children (Ps 113:9).

Today in Your Word

Today you told me how Jacob, who deceived his father, was himself deceived by his uncle Laban. How true it is that we reap what we sow (Gal 6:7–8)! Laban’s deception set the stage for a bitter war between his daughters, Leah and Rachel. Jacob loved Rachel, and when you saw that Leah was unloved, you opened her womb while Rachel remained barren. Rather than coming to you as her aunt Rebekah had done (Gen 25:21), Rachel took matters into her own hands and urged Jacob to father children through her maid Bilhah (cf. Gen 16:1–2). Leah soon returned the favor, and Jacob’s children grew up caught in the middle of a resentful struggle between his wives. In the meantime, Laban realized that he was being blessed because of Jacob. He convinced Jacob to stay, and then tried to cheat him. Yet you prospered Jacob and he became very rich (Gen 30:43).

Reflection

Jacob’s life with Laban is a fascinating example of how you used one deceiver to discipline and train another. Do I recognize and appreciate that you bring irritations into my life in order to refine my character?

Request

Father, help me to see how you are using my present circumstances to conform me to the image of your Son, Jesus Christ (Rom 8:29). Give me the grace I need to recognize my flaws and yield to the Spirit’s refining work in my life.

Thanksgiving

Thank you for being a God who sympathizes with my sorrows and feels the pain of my hurts. I take great comfort in the fact that you wept with Lazarus’ sisters, even though you knew that you were going to raise him from the dead (John 11:33–35).

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Suggested Hymn: “To Know That He Knows” by Charles W. Naylor.
Meditation Verse: Genesis 30:17.