- Rev. Thomas Abraham
In the Middle of Life’s Journey
Genesis 28:11-17 “When he reached a certain place, he stopped for the night because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones there, he put it under his head and lay down to sleep.”
This is the journey of not merely a man, but a man of God, God’s chosen man, by whom God will be known from generation to generation.
1. It is an unexpected journey
2. It is an ill-equipped journey
3. It is a journey through a strange way
What should we do in such a situation?
Let us look at Jacob, how he managed or how he overcame challenges – in a reversed situation.
Many times, God allows his saints to take unexpected journeys. A journey that they have not decided to make, or one they are not prepared for; but a journey in which they follow God’s GPS and not their own.
There may be some of you here going through strange situations in which you are in uncharted territory. You may be in a place you have never been before.
Joshua 3:4 “Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before. But keep a distance of about two thousand cubits between you and the ark; do not go near it.”
1. “When he reached a certain place”
Jacob did not reach his destination, he had only stopped at “a certain place”
We are in a journey – some of you, like Jacob, are in the middle of the journey and have not yet reached your destination.
Jacob left his comfort zone and he’s now making his way to the place that God is leading him to, his place of blessings, a destination he cannot see, it is hidden from his eyes.
Dear friends, believe that God has stored so many blessings for you. Do not question God, do not murmur against God - don’t blame others while you are on this journey. God has not yet finished his work on your life. You haven’t reached your destination.
Genesis 32:10 “I am unworthy of all the kindness and faithfulness you have shown your servant. I had only my staff when I crossed this Jordan, but now I have become two camps.”
2. “He stopped for the night because the sun had set.”
Nobody likes a break in their journey. But the truth is that there is no such thing as a direct flight to God’s blessings. We must go through different connections to reach our destination – that is God’s unchanging plan.
Look at the life of Joseph. He was taken away from his comfort zone that was his father’s house. From a wilderness journey, to being thrown into a dry well by his envious brothers, to becoming a slave in the hands of the Medianites, to a bitter experience in Potiphar’s house, to a painful stay in Pharaoh’s jail, we see that for Joseph, there was no direct flight from his house to Pharaoh’s throne.
In addition, look at Moses, David, and many heroes of the Bible, who all had to go through this kind of a detour in the middle of their journey.
In the same way, today some of you are in such a situation. But the Lord wants to remind you to not give up because God never fails, he is always working in your life.
The sun had set – the darkness covered Jacob – there seemed to be no way out – so he stopped for the night.
He was not scared – he didn’t get upset – he didn’t go to into depression.
Even though the journey was strange, though the situation seemed bleak, Jacob’s mind was ready to adjust with the situation.
Sometimes our mind acts like a toddler, not wanting to cooperate, acting childish, stubborn. Because it doesn’t understand the situation, it will not cooperate, like a child who does not understand their circumstance so they refuse to behave.
But because Jacob knew his father’s and his grandfather’s God personally, he connected his mind with Jehovah God. He was in tune with the heart of God.
How well do you know your God that you are able to trust Him and quiet your mind in difficult situations?
How strong is your mind in your relationship with God?
Don’t be upset because the sun has set. Though the sun of this world sets, our real sun will never set.
Isaiah 60:19-20 – “The sun will no more be your light by day, nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you, for the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory.20 Your sun will never set again, and your moon will wane no more; the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your days of sorrow will end.”
Are you looking for a natural way to success or a supernatural way to success?
Are you looking for a natural way to deliverance or supernatural way to deliverance?
Are you looking for natural help or supernatural help?
3. “Taking one of the stones there, he put it under his head and lay down to sleep.”
Just the night before, he had slept on a fancy bed and a fancy pillow. But today, he has a rough stone for a pillow.
But if God is with me, I have no problem sleeping on a rough stone. God can turn any stone into a Tempur-pedic pillow.
In other words, if God is with me, I can adjust in any situation.
On the other hand, if God is not with me, even the most luxurious palace life will not give me comfort.
Because God was with Daniel, he had no problem spending a night in the den of lions.
Because God was with the three boys in Babylon, they had no problem praising God in the fiery furnace.
Jacob was alone, with no one to give him company. He was in a strange land, in the middle of a thick forest, covered by thick darkness.
Yet Jacob was able to go to sleep because as it says in Psalm 121:3-4 “He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber; 4 indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord watches over you— the Lord is your shade at your right hand;6 the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night.7 The Lord will keep you from all harm— he will watch over your life;8 the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.”
Since my Lord who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep, then why should I stay awake? Why should I worry? Why should I lose sleep?
Peter had no problem sleeping in prison. One cannot sleep in such a situation unless they are confident that they are in the hands of the Lord.
Raathriyil njaan daivathinte kaikalil
When Paul & Silas started to sing and praise, God responded.
Why did God open heaven over Jacob that night?
Jacob called upon his father’s God before he fell asleep.
And God responded to his prayer and cry.
"12 He had a dream in which he saw a stairway resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. 13 There above it stood the Lord, and he said: “I am the Lord, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac. I will give you and your descendants the land on which you are lying."
Thank the Lord for the setting of the sun – thank the Lord for a covering of thick darkness – because in that situation, Jacob saw heaven, he saw angels, he saw the golden stairway, and he saw the Lord.
Never before had Jacob seen what he saw in the middle of his journey.