A Kiss of Joy and Surprise?


Now as soon as Jacob saw Rachel the daughter of Laban his mother’s brother, and the sheep of Laban his mother’s brother, Jacob came near and rolled the stone from the well’s mouth and watered the flock of Laban his mother’s brother. Then Jacob kissed Rachel and wept aloud. Genesis 29:10-11

         It wasn’t all that long ago that I lived expecting God to disappoint me. I was sure that what I deserved, and what I was worth, dictated His provision of something meager. When God poured on favor and blessing instead, I cried for joy and with great surprise. Many times over.

         Today, while there may be times I’m disappointed in God’s timing of a provision, I know it’s not because I’ve fallen into dis-favor.

         When Jacob met Rachel for the first time, he wept out loud. That means wailed. Was he surprised at God’s gift? Was he relieved? Or was he simply overcome by her beauty? We don’t know. I wish this account, and many other stories in scripture, would offer a lot more detail so that we wouldn’t have to speculate.

         Jacob came into this land because he was forced to leave home. His departure had been necessary because of the plot he carried out against his brother. His sin had to have done a number on his confidence with God. Yes, God had appeared to him on his journey, in a dream, and spoken a blessing over him. But you and I both know that blessing doesn’t always mean the removal of consequences from our past sins. Jacob will face some things shortly that are related to his past precedent of deceit. But in this part of the story, God blessed him beyond his dreams.

         As I think about my spiritual journey, I still see the shadows of consequences due to the choices I’ve made throughout my lifetime. However, God’s grace is there to help me endure. I’ve also lived long enough to see Him redeem my mistakes. I know what it is to weep for joy, surprise, relief, and ecstasy.

I used to only know one kind of tears. I’m glad You’re teaching me to also weep in tearful joyfulness. Amen

Journal Question: Unbelief can be characterized by a refusal to believe in the good news of God’s love and forgiveness. What joyful tears could be yours? All that it requires is renouncing the lie that you’re exempt or excluded from God’s blessing.

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