Posts Tagged 'Jacob'

Proper 8/Ordinary 13 2016 – 2 Kings 2:1-2

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

2 Kings 2:1-2Now when the LORD was about to take Elijah up to heaven by a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal.  Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here; for the LORD has sent me as far as Bethel.” But Elisha said, “As the LORD lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So they went down to Bethel.

When the Israelites first camped in the Holy Land, they camped at Gilgal, which also became associated with the start of spiritual journeys.  Jacob had his vision of the ladder to heaven, and he talked to God at Bethel so there is a spiritual maturity associated with Bethel.  So in the last hours of Elijah’s life, the prophet took his successor through a spiritual walk, the symbolism of which would have been fully understood by Elisha.

Loving God, help us walk with confidence as we seek to follow the path you have set for us.  Amen.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Genesis 37:22-24

Wednesday, August 3, 2011 – Proper 14 & Ordinary 19, Year A

Genesis 37:22-24Reuben said to them, “Shed no blood; throw Joseph into this pit here in the wilderness, but lay no hand on him”—that he might rescue him and out of their hand and restore him to his father. So when Joseph came to his brothers, they stripped him of his robe, the long robe with the sleeves that he wore; and they took him and threw him into a pit. The pit was empty; there was no water in it.

The robe was so much a part of Joseph’s self image that he wore it in front of his brothers despite knowing their feelings about it. I wonder how many people coming before us today will, in some way, feel stripped or robbed of that very thing which gives, or gave, meaning to their life. Since it is rarely as obvious as a coat of many colors, remember to treat those who come before you with gentleness.

Prayer: Merciful God, people will come before us today with hidden stories of pain and suffering. Give us gentle spirits so that we might be a source of comfort for all. AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Genesis 37:14a, 18-19

Tuesday, August 2, 2011 – Proper 14 & Ordinary 19, Year A

We are studying the story of the “amazing technicolor dreamcoat” which was given to Joseph by his father Jacob. Joseph has a series of dreams where he sees his family bowing down to him as king. Having told his brothers and father of his dreams, he is now hated by his brothers, and he has been scolded by his father.

Genesis 37:14a, 18-19So Jacob said to Joseph “Go now, and see if it is well with your brothers and with the flock; and bring word back to me.” They saw him coming from a distance, and before he came near to them they conspired to kill him. They said to one another, “Here comes this dreamer.”

I couldn’t help but think of the words from John Lennon’s song Imagine:
You may think I’m a dreamer,
But I’m not the only one.
I hope some day you’ll join us,
And the world will live as one.

Prayer: Loving God, today we simply pray for peace – peace at home, peace at work, peace in the world. AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Genesis 37:3-4

Monday, August 1, 2011 – Proper 14 & Ordnary 19, Year A

The lectionary selections for this week include: Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28; Psalm 105:1-6, 16-22, 45b; Romans 10:5-15 and Matthew 14:22-33. The alternate readings are 1 Kings 19:9-18 and Psalm 85:8-13.

Genesis 37:3-4Now Israel [Jacob] loved Joseph more than any other of his children, because he was the son of his old age; and he made him a long robe with sleeves. But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably to him.

This is the beginning of the story of the “amazing technicolor dreamcoat” Joseph. Like his father Jacob, Joseph was the youngest son. AND despite Jewish tradition of the time which placed much honor on the firstborn, God is going to work through the youngest son again.

Prayer: Gracious and wise God, you can work wonders through each of us. Continue to nudge us so we might always do your will. AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Genesis 32:24 & Matthew 14:13

Friday, July 29, 2011 – Proper 13 & Ordinary 18, Year A

Genesis 32:24Jacob was left alone; and a man wrestled with him until daybreak.

Matthew 14:13Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a deserted place by himself.

These scriptures are tied together in that both Jacob and Jesus wanted to be alone. Jacob feared for his life, and Jesus had just learned of the death of John the Baptist. Through wrestling with a man, and through the miracle feeding of the 5,000, God’s presence with both men is made apparent. No matter how alone we might feel, God remains a steadfast presence in our lives.

Prayer: Eternal God, when we go through dark hours in our lives, may we be especially mindful of your constant presence. AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Genesis 32:24

Tuesday, July 26, 2011 – Proper 13 & Ordinary 18, Year A

Genesis 32:24 Jacob was left alone; and a man wrestled with him until daybreak.

Jacob had stolen his father’s birthright from his brother Esau, and he had just heard that Esau was approaching with 400 men. Fearing for his life, he sent his family away to face Esau alone. In what Jacob thought was his darkest hour, he learns that God was with him, just as God is with us.

Prayer: Steadfast God, may we always sense your presence in our lives, especially at those times we are feeling most alone. AMEN

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Genesis 32:24-26, 28, 29b

Monday, July 25, 2011 – Proper 13 & Ordinary 18, Year A

I hope you were able to keep cool over the very hot weekend. The lectionary selections for this week include: Genesis 32:22-31; Psalm 17:1-7, 15; Romans 9:1-5 and Matthew 14:13-21. The alternate readings include: Isaiah 55:1-5 and Psalm 145:8-9, 14-21.

Genesis 32:24-26, 28, 29bJacob was left alone; and a man wrestled with him until daybreak. When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he struck him on the hip socket; and Jacob’s hip was put out of joint as he wrestled with him. Then he said, “Let me go for day is breaking.” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go, unless you bless me.”…Then the man said, “You shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with humans, and have prevailed.”…And there he blessed him.

Have you ever wrestled with God? From simple choices to life-altering decisions, I would guess most of us have done just that at least once. The good news in this scripture is that even the great forebears of our faith have wrestled with God.

Prayer: Patient God, we often refuse to hear your voice, your direction. Continue to nudge us toward you despite ourselves. AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Genesis 28:13a, 15-16

Tuesday, July 12, 2011 – Proper 11 & Ordinary 16, Year A

Genesis 28:13a, 15-16And the LORD stood beside him [Jacob] and said, “…Know that I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the LORD is in this place – and I did not know it!”

Jacob goes on to build an altar to God using the stone on which he had rested his head, and he names the place Bethel, which means House of God. Through our actions and attitudes, we seek to set a tone at the Church Health Center so that those coming to us to serve or be served can say, “Surely the Lord is in this place.”

Prayer: Loving God, wherever we are, help us create an atmosphere that lets everyone know you are a living presence among us. AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Genesis 28:10-12

Monday, July 11, 2011 – Proper 11 & Ordinary 16, Year A

The lectionary texts for this week include: Genesis 28:10-19a; Psalm 139:1-12, 23-24; Romans 8:12-25; Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43. There are some alternate scriptures as well including: Wisdom of Solomon 12:13, 16-19; Isaiah 44:6-8; Psalm 86:11-17.

Genesis 28:10-12 Jacob left Beer-sheba and went toward Haran. He came to a certain place and stayed there the night, because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones of the place, he put it under his head and lay down in that place. And he dreamed that there was a ladder set up on the earth, the top of it reaching to heaven; and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it.

I admit it! I have been known to get teary-eyed during final scenes of the once popular series Touched by an Angel. This scripture reminds us that whether through angels or some other miraculous way, God is an active participant in our world and in our lives.

Prayer: Gracious God, today we give thanks to you for your constant presence in our lives. AMEN.

Thought & Prayer for Proper 24 & Ordinary 29, 2010 – Genesis 32:25-26

Genesis 32:25-26When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he struck him on the hip socket; and Jacob’s hip was put out of joint as he wrestled him. Then he said, “Let me go, for day is breaking.” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go, unless you bless me.”

“You missed your calling,” is a phrase many of us have heard from well-meaning friends. No doubt some of us have missed our calling. Some of us have even wrestled with God to avoid living into God’s plan for us.

Prayer: Loving God, we don’t always understand your will for us, but we humbly ask you to bless our efforts this and every day. AMEN.


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