The Baker Blog
Pastor Mike Baker Of Eastview Christian Church 2017
An awesome place

Recently, I was drawn to the story of Jacob in Genesis 28.  You’ll remember him as the third member of that famous covenant trio of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  But at this point in his life we find him in a place called Luz on his way to his uncle’s house and so tired, he uses a stone for a pillow.  But something happened that changed everything for him.  Through a dream of angels on a ladder to heaven, he found God.  Here’s how the Scripture recorded his discovery  “When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he thought, ‘Surely the Lord is in this place, and I was not aware of it.’” (Genesis 28:16).  I think that we are often like Jacob in three ways.

1.  On the run from the past.  Jacob was on the run from his past.  His life of cheating and deceiving had finally caught up with him.  After stealing his brother Esau’s blessing, his brother threatened to kill him and Jacob’s mother took the threat seriously enough to send her favorite son to her brother’s house.  Like Jacob, we have all done things, said things, hurt people, been hurt, made mistakes, and failed greatly in our collective pasts.  We have a tendency to run from these things and try to put them as far behind us as we can.

2.  Heading into an uncertain future.  Not only was Jacob running from his past, he was heading into the unknown.  He grew up in Beesheba and now he was traveling to his uncle’s house in Haran over 450 miles away.  Sure, he was family, but as he would soon find out, Uncle Laban was a cheat worse than him.  Like Jacob, we have a lot of unknowns we walk towards every day.  Will I get married?  What will I be?  Where will I live?  What is God’s plan for me?  How will this turn out? Will I get cancer?  Will I be healed?  Will I be okay financially?  How will my kids turn out?  I could go on.  Truth is, we all are on this “unknown” path of Jacob’s.

3.  In the “nowhere” in between.  Finally, Jacob stopped for the night in a “random” place.  Just a place to lay down and get some rest.  I think we all take for granted the place in which we find ourselves.  Have you noticed?  Everyone seems to want to be somewhere else all the time.  Why does life always feel like we’re in a nowhere town with jobs, relationships, and lives that are going nowhere?  Could it be that this “no place” is an awesome place?

Well, it is if God is there.  What Jacob didn’t know is that the God of his past (“I am the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac” – Genesis 28:13) was also the God of his future (“I am with you and will watch over you” Genesis 28:15) as well as the God of his present (“this is none other than the house of God” – Genesis 28:17).  What made Luz an awesome place?  The location hadn’t changed, but Jacob’s awareness of God had.  

Maybe we should consider today that the God of our past is directing our future and this place is an important God-stop along the way.  Maybe the difference between our living in Luz and Bethel is just realizing Who is with us here.  When we do, we’ll discover an awesome place.

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