March 19, 2012

Crossing the Jabbok

I have been wrestling lately.

I’ve wrestled before but over different things.

Back then you could have called me Jacob. 

I was a deceiver. I deceived myself and it took a wounding to change me.

I still limp from that wounding, that touch of God that came in the darkest of places.

That limp is a gift. It reminds of just how loved I am.

Out of the darkness and into the Light, I crossed over to new life.

In the Bible, Jacob got up after his blessing and limped across the Jabbok. He faced his greatest fear, his brother Esau.

The Jabbok rolled over pebbles, emptied into the Jordan. 

Jabbok, in Hebrew means “emptying.”

I waded across the stream and to meet my greatest fear head on.




I picked my way across the Jabbok, knowing my Esau waited.

Fear didn’t kill me. 

Esau ran over to me and embraced me. And by some miracle I threw my arms up and around him and hugged him back.

It is unsettling to receive grace---to grab hold of fear.

Fear loses it power when you embrace it tight. 

It is like when you were a child and you were crying out of control, scared to death from a dream in the night, but someone who loves you wraps you up tight, squeezes you firm in the midst of your crying. 

The longer they hold, fear ebbs away in gentle sobs that melt into the love that holds.

Love holds.

Love overcame fear. 

Love overcomes fear.

“There is no fear in love.”

You can believe that when you have wrestled with God in the dark of the night.

There are more streams to cross on this journey.

In the morning, I will be crossing the Jabbok.

(Read Jacob and Esau's story in Genesis 32-33)



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