When we say the word Christmas, it’s virtually impossible to divorce the holiday from the acts of giving and receiving. I would also venture a guess that we are often more concerned with the receiving part of the equation than we are the giving part. We live in a highly consumer-focused world where you and your happiness are the primary focus. As we get closer to Christmas, the phrase Jesus is the reason for the season becomes more prevalent in an attempt to help rectify this misalignment of priorities surrounding what it is that we, as followers of Christ, are actually celebrating.
As we read about Jacob’s bout with the heavenly man in Genesis 32, it is important that we look at this event in the context of his story. When we do, we will see that Jacob struggles as we do with discontent. His family line was blessed by God when Abraham was promised that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the sky. He was so desperate for more that he deceived his father Isaac and stole Esau’s blessing. In a famous dream aptly named Jacob’s Ladder, his blessing from God is reinforced. He was so blessed that his father-in-law Laban didn’t want him to leave because even just being in Jacob’s presence brought with it blessings.
Still, after all of that, we find Jacob in Genesis 32 wrestling with his discontent and demanding yet another blessing. When is it enough for us? When do we take stock of all the good God has done in our lives and ask Him to share that blessing with others? Will you find time to pray for those who are not as affluent as you are? How can you use the blessing that God has given you to serve others?