Saturday, January 24, 2015


Dear Christa—
God chose Rebekah for Isaac. Abraham sent his servant to his homeland, to his family, to seek a wife for his son. The servant prayed to the God of Abraham, who appears to be his God too. He had depended on God to go before him, and he had. There the servant found Rebekah.
Rebekah is a hard worker—and a risk taker. She speaks to the stranger. She waters his camels. She invites him home. She accepts his gifts; and, in a matter of hours, collects her things and leaves her home forever—to marry a man she has never seen.
I wonder what she thought on the journey back. Did she doubt herself? Did she wonder about this servant she was traveling with? Whatever her thoughts, she had made her resolve. When she sees Isaac approaching in the distance, she throws on the veil and is led away by him, and Isaac loved her.
We don’t really know much about Rebekah. Laban and their mother appear to be calculating, and Rebekah is eventually the same in her actions of deceiving Isaac and sending Jacob away to protect him, the blessing, and the birthright he’d stolen.
Rebekah had favored Jacob; Isaac favored Esau.
There’s danger in that picture. Favoritism in general and in families in particular has a way of working to a bad end that God eventually has to wrestle out of us. Somehow, it isn’t quite communicated to Esau what’s important to the family, and Jacob—well, you know what they say about the apple not falling far from the tree—at least on his mother’s side.
Not much is revealed about the household of Isaac and Rebekah.
Two brothers who could have been good friends, could have been a support for each other, could have been iron that sharpens iron; but they were not. Parental favoritism slammed a wedge between them…one that appears to have never quite loosened out.
Sometimes, the example is in what not to do.
Yes, favoritism has a way of working to a bad end that God eventually has to wrestle out of us.
—the parishioner who doesn’t do anything

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