“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 NIV).

Jacob tricked his bother Esau out of his birthright and the blessing of his father, Isaac. As a result, his brother swore he’d kill him for his treachery. So Jacob, who valued and obtained what Esau had despised, runs for his life! Finding himself, as it were, in “No man’s land” and weary from his journey, he takes a stone for a pillow and lays down to rest. He slept and had a dream that would change his destiny. He encounters God.


Like, Jacob’s journey, we discover our true purpose while in the “in between place” of life. Determined to leave where we’ve been (with all the risks), not having arrived at our desired destiny, we need to take a break and rest. The key to where we want to be and where we are at in the circumstances of life begins when we “Cease striving and know that He is God”(Psalm 46:10). Or as Corrie Ten Boon wrote, “Don’t wrestle…nestle!”


Whether the need in our life is for physical rest or spiritual rest there is great benefit. Jacob discovers the God of His father, Isaac, and makes certain commitments he would not otherwise have made. “Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, ‘Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it. And he was afraid and said, How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven! Then Jacob rose early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put at his head, set it up as a pillar, and poured oil on top of it. And he called the name of that place Bethel…Then Jacob made a vow, saying, If God will be with me, and keep me in this way that I am going, and give me bread to eat and clothing to put on, so that I come back to my fathers house in peace, then the Lord shall be my God. And this stone which I have set as a pillar shall be Gods house, and of all that You give me I will surely give a tenth to You” (Genesis 28:16-22 NKJV). He thought was all-alone. He realized he was not alone. God was with him on the journey. He also discovered that he had “open heavens”. He understood that the angels of God were doing heaven’s bidding in the unseen realm in the earth. In other words, the business of heaven was being carried out even while he slept.


We too must rest in faith with the knowledge that God is on His throne and never sleeps nor slumbers. He watches over His own. We must stop being “the great pretenders” as if God’s universe will fall apart with out help. We can roll over and sleep in His faithful, loving arms.


One more thing Jacob discovered was “Bethel”. Bethel means “House of God”. His grandfather, Abraham, had met God at Bethel and returned there when he had lost his way (See Genesis 13:3-4). Bethel is the meeting place with God. Like Abraham, we need to return to the house of God. And like Jacob, we must encounter “El-Bethel”, the God of the House. Ultimately, when we have found our resting place in God, then He can find His dwelling place in us. “For the Lord has chosen Zion; He has desired it for His dwelling place: This is My resting place forever; Here I will dwell, for I have desired it. I will abundantly bless her provision; I will satisfy her poor with bread. I will also clothe her priests with salvation, And her saints shall shout aloud for joy” (Psalm 132:13-16 NKJV).

(c) Copyright 2013, Walter Fletcher Jr. All rights reserved. This article may be copied free of charge provided that it is not altered from its original content. Please address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com.


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