Good Morning! It is quite natural for us get disappointed when family members and friends fail to do something that we want them to do or fail to show up at a place where we expect them to be or support us in the way that we need them. And we even at times come to the conclusion that there is no point in trusting anyone but always good to keep people at a distance. But are there times when we have been disappointed with God? Our thought for reflection this Tuesday morning is, “Our God is our only reliable and all sufficient God.”
“Then come, let us go up to Bethel, where I will build an altar to God, who answered me in the day of my distress and who has been with me wherever I have gone” (Genesis 35:3)
Jacob was near Bethel but not close to the God of Bethel. Jacob’s condition was in no way different from that of many of us. At times we may appear to be close to God while the opposite could be true. So Bethel to Jacob evoked special memories of his earlier personal encounter with God for it was the place where he had felt very close to God. There he wanted to return to build an altar and worship him. As someone overwhelmed by gratitude towards God, Jacob declared to his family his desire to worship God at Bethel. While focusing on the reliability of God, Jacob mentioned two of His key attributes:
1. He is a God who ANSWERS US in the day of distress.
Jacob was in distress when he was exploited by his uncle Laban. But when he cried unto God, God answered, “I have seen all that Laban has been doing to you” (Genesis 31:12). When Jacob went to meet Esau, he was in great fear and distress (Genesis 32:7) and he cried unto to God (Genesis 32:9). God did protect him from Esau by giving favour in his eyes. Later God blessed him too (Genesis 32:29). Thus every time Jacob was in distress and called unto God, He answered him. Has not the same God been faithful to us too in keeping his promise:
“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know?”
2. He is a God who ACCOMPANIES US wherever we go.
When Jacob left Beersheba and set out for Haran, God appeared in his dream and promised,
“I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go…..”
And God did keep that promise throughout his life. When he went in search of the future wife, God was with him and enabled him to find Rachel. When Jacob served Laban, God was with him and blessed the labour of his hands (Genesis 30:27). When Jacob fled from Laban secretly and expected Laban to harm him, God was with him and protected him (Genesis 31:29, 42). Is it not true that it is because God has been accompanying us wherever we go that we have been safe and successful?
Our God has truly been our only reliable support and our all sufficient God at all times. And will continue to be so today and in the future too. Let’s pray:
“Dear Lord, thank you so much for answering my prayers in the days of distress. Thank you for accompanying me wherever I go. It is because of you I am safe and successful in my life. I begin this new day with the confidence that you will be with me wherever I go and whatever I do. Lord I pray this morning like Moses, “If your presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here” (Exodus 33:15).
In Jesus’ name,... Amen!