Devotions day 3:
REMEMBER GOD’S PROMISES
“…Then Jacob prayed, ‘O God of my father Abraham, God of my father Isaac, Lord, you who said to me, ‘Go back to your country and your relatives, and I will make you prosper’, I am unworthy of all the kindness and faithfulness you have shown your servant. I had only my staff when I crossed this Jordan, but now I have become two camps. Save me, I pray, from the hand of my brother Esau, for I am afraid he will come and attack me, and also the mothers with their children. But you have said, ‘I will surely make you prosper and will make your descendants like the sand of the sea, which cannot be counted.’ ” -Genesis 32:9-12
Jacob had been on the run for a long time. He left his hometown after deceiving his brother Esau and took his inheritance and he had been on the run ever since.
He eventually settled down and found a wife. But later he ended up having a conflict with his father-in-law, Laban. Their relationship was on the rocks and he was looking for a way out. So once again he was on the run, now from Laban.
Then God told Jacob that it was time for him to go back to his hometown and that there He would make him prosper.
This scripture reveals to me that you can’t live life in hiding; you can’t always run when you face problems or challenges. At some point in our lives, we are going have to face your fears in order to reach the destiny that God has set for us.
So, Jacob willingly packed his belongs and began his journey. Halfway through this journey, he remembered why he ran from his hometown in the first place – he remembered what he had done to his brother; and when that reality set in, he found himself overwhelmed by fear.
Many of us, like Jacob, hear God’s calling and we journey toward what He has called us to. At first, we may be excited about the call and are very enthusiastic to answer to it. But somewhere in the middle of the journey, our past pops up. We remember how we messed up back then, and how incapable and unworthy we are of the future God has promised us.
When we begin to look at our circumstances and abilities, we begin to experience fear. Fear is crippling. It many times is what prevents us from reaching our full potential. It is what stops us from getting to a place where God wants us to empower. It blocks our success.
Here is Jacob, spending a night in the wilderness because he won’t go ahead on his journey. He is afraid, and all he is thinking about is: “How can I make things right with my brother?”
How many of us really wish we could go back and make things right in our past? The reality is that we haven’t always been given the luxury of going back to the past and fixing it. Sometimes what is done is done. We can do our best to make amends where we have wronged others, and we can forgive where we’ve been wronged, but we cannot always make it the way it was before.
If this is the case with you, then it’s time to move forward. Do not let the past cripple you. You may have experienced failure in your life, whether in business, relationships, or spiritual battles, but it’s not the end yet.
In the midst of your fear, remember the one who called you and made a promise to you. He already knows about your past, and yet he called you to a prosperous future.
If you have been running, it is time for you to stop and face your fears. You may think that you are facing death in a sense, as Jacob thought he was. But Jacob remembered that God had promised him prosperity and victory. In his prayer, he cries out to God and says, “Lord – I am afraid my brother will attack and kill me, but YOU said SURELY, You will prosper me”.
God is faithful, and He is never blindsided. When He calls us to greatness, He is already aware of the challenges that lie ahead. But He wants us to face our fears by depending on Him and placing our trust in His Word.
John Wayne put it well when he said: “Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway.”
When you are in the middle of a crossroads and you find yourself in doubt, pray. Don’t pray that fear will go away but pray that even if you feel overwhelmed by fear, you will dream on and paddle on. Remember also that physical death is inevitable – so why not die having pursued your purpose?