December 6 – Jesse Tree Story Day 7
What’s on your to-do list for Christmas? My mental to-do lists for Christmas seem to be focused on the goal of having a perfect Christmas for my family, but I don’t think I’ve ever achieved that. Good, further proof I’m not perfect and need Jesus. What’s on your to-do list for Christmas, and how do you keep things balanced between where we live (physical) and where we belong (spiritual)?
READ: Jacob’s Journey in Genesis 27:41 – 28:22
Vs. 27:41-28:9. Let’s catch up to today’s reading. Isaac survived what we read about yesterday and went on to marry Rebekah. They had twin sons, Esau who was born first and then Jacob. Jacob tricked Esau into giving up his birthright and tricked Isaac into giving his father’s blessing to Jacob rather than Esau, so Esau held a grudge against Jacob (for more details into all that confusion, see Genesis 25:19-34 and 27:1-40). This is why Jacob left home, at his mom’s prodding, and went on a journey to find a wife. What type of man was Jacob?
Regardless, God chose him—third guy in the lineage of Jesus (Matthew 1:2). Does this seem fair? Sometimes our sense of justice places limits on God, but God cannot be limited. God’s ways are higher than our ways. He can do anything and use anyone for His glory. Remember Paul? He was killing Christians when God chose him to take the Good News to the whole world. A positive way to look at this—I don’t have to be perfect to be used by God.
Vs. 28:10-15. So, God gave Jacob a dream. Looking at the details of the dream, how would you interpret it? Luckily, we have some help on this one. From John 1:50-51, Jesus is calling Nathanael to be his disciple, and says, “…You shall see greater things than that…I tell you the truth, you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.” Yay! Confirmation that Jesus is Jacob’s ladder! Jesus is the ladder, the Way, between our circumstances and God in heaven. From Ann Voskamp’s Unwrapping the Greatest Gift, “See, Jesus doesn’t just come down to show you the steps you have to take to get up to heaven—Jesus comes down and makes Himself into the steps to carry you up to heaven.” That is, if you choose to let Him. Search yourself—do you find yourself trying to climb your own ladders to heaven?
Vs. 28:16-22. After his dream and God passing Abraham’s blessing through him, Jacob is all over this God thing, though through no efforts of his own. He’s still as imperfect as he was before the dream, but that doesn’t matter when it comes to God’s grace.
All my trying to be good enough to climb the ladder will never get me to heaven. Only Jesus can take me, no fare required because He paid it already.
I try so hard to make everything perfect, especially for this season. But Your grace is sufficient; my trying hard isn’t getting me any closer to You. That’s why I’m on fire for this Advent study, so I can set my heart right, in the center of Your will, as I go about preparations for Christmas. Just to Day 6, and I can’t believe where you’ve already taken me! It’s addicting! Thank You for this time with You, growing, Your ladder Jesus, and the gift of Your grace, and thank You for using little old imperfect me!