This article is an excerpt from Dr. Sala's book entitled Tomorrow Starts Today published by Barbour Publishing.
Dr. Harold J. Sala, a well-known speaker, author and Bible teacher, serves as founder and president of Guidelines, an international ministry reaching into more than 100 countries of the world. Dr. Sala has authored over 23 books and publications, including HeroesPeople Who Made A Difference in Our World, which was recently awarded (February 1999) the prestigious Angel Award for excellence in moral quality media.
If you had cheated your brother out of his inheritance and had fled for your life, then learned a few years later that he was coming to see you with a small army of thugs, would you be concerned? Youd be scared silly, right? The fear of what might happen when Esau arrived drove Jacob to his knees before God.
You can read the full story in Genesis 32-33, but heres what happened when Jacob went one-on-one with God: That night Jacob got up and took his two wives, his two maidservants and his eleven sons and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. After he had sent them across
. Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacobs hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. Then the man said, Let me go, for it is daybreak. But Jacob replied, I will not let you go unless you bless me. The man asked him, What is your name? Jacob, he answered. Then the man said, Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome
. Then he blessed him there (Genesis 32:22-29).
For the rest of his life, Jacob limpedhe bore the physical mark of His encounter with God. Whenever you encounter God, you will never be the same. From that point on, you will bear the mark of the divine on your life.
Sound scary? Not for a moment. God is a loving God, and when He blesses your life, it is always for the better.
What are some of the results of an encounter with God? Your perspective changes. You realize how weak and incapable you are. Your priorities change. Holiness, not just happiness, becomes important. Living right becomes more important than living well. You become determined to trust God and do the right thing, no matter what the cost.
When Jacob met his brother, instead of a bloody battle, he made peace with him. Thats the difference God makes.
Never fear to go one-on-one with God. It will forever settle the question of whether God cares about you.
Resource reading: Genesis 33
© 2000 Dr. Harold J. Sala Used by Permission