The Waiting Father
Lord of time, You alone give me the gift of time. You’ve given me time in this world. Thank You.
Read Genesis 46:1-34
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION
“Hope in the God of all our tomorrows provides optimism for the future and gives strength for today” (Haddon Robinson). We may not know the future, but we know who holds the future!
If Genesis 37 to 46 were a play, Jacob would not have set foot on the stage since the beginning of Act 1. Yet he has never been far from the action. Joseph has longed for him, spoken of him and asked about his fate. The memory of his father’s love has never dimmed. Ripped away in his teens from a father who loved him, Joseph has yearned for reunion.
Joseph’s embrace of his father (29) is the true climax of this drama. Along with Jacob, all the family has been delivered into safety in Egypt (6,7). That this is truly the work of God is confirmed in vs. 3 and 4. Jacob hears God’s voice directly affirming his journey, urging him not to be afraid.
It is Jacob, more than anyone, who is astounded by the faithfulness of God. Behind the scenes, God has been at work for the sake of his chosen people. Jacob is ready to die in peace (30). No matter how deep our troubles, the promises of God are deeper still. God will complete the work he has begun. God will fulfill the dreams he has given us. Joseph wasn’t the first dreamer in his family. Walter Brueggemann suggests that Jacob nurtured in Joseph a bias toward dreaming: “Jacob evoked in Joseph’s life a sense of his being bound for something more and something better beyond the competence of his older brothers” (W. Brueggemann, Genesis). Jacob himself inherited a dream from Isaac, who received it from his father Abraham. It was the dream of a family as numerous as the stars, living in the peace and prosperity of God. It becomes, in Christ, God’s dream for the human family.
If God called you on a journey (a journey of spiritual growth or an area of service), what would he ask you to leave behind? How would God calm your fears?
Sometimes, Father, I long to hear words of reassurance, words to calm my fears. I give all my anxieties to You.