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Why did it take 20 years for God to prepare Jacob for his return to Canaan. God’s timing is always perfect. Jacob as he departed was a master con man. He always used opportunity to better his position. He had no loyalty to anyone but himself. God took him back to his roots, stripped him of his position and subjected him to a con artist that was clearly his match. For the next 20 years Jacob saw Laban lie, cheat and steal to improve his lot. Jacob saw the affect it had on Laban’s sons, his family and on Jacob himself.
Jacob learned to be different. He learned to trust God to execute God’s plan. God delivered to him a four wives and 11 children. God built for Jacob a fortune of livestock, family and faith. So, now a much matured patriarch was ready to lead a nation back to the land God had promised him. It took the full twenty years to establish God’s leadership of Jacob and Jacob’s dependence on God.
In our lives, there is much preparation for our mission to serve God. God has to establish his hold on our lives and prepare us to humbly follow him as he frees us and blesses us. In addition, he prepares the way for us so that the Journey not only impacts us and so many others we meet along the way. The Christian walk was never intended to be insulated or singular. It is never about us, it is always about God and his plan–we cannot follow him and not impact others. He is patient in his preparation, so, we must also be patient in our process of being molded to become like him and to be used for his plan.
God Bless You
Jacob heard that Laban’s sons were saying, “Jacob has taken everything our father owned and has gained all this wealth from what belonged to our father.” 2 And Jacob noticed that Laban’s attitude toward him was not what it had been.
3 Then the Lord said to Jacob, “Go back to the land of your fathers and to your relatives, and I will be with you.”
4 So Jacob sent word to Rachel and Leah to come out to the fields where his flocks were. 5 He said to them, “I see that your father’s attitude toward me is not what it was before, but the God of my father has been with me. 6 You know that I’ve worked for your father with all my strength, 7 yet your father has cheated me by changing my wages ten times. However, God has not allowed him to harm me. 8 If he said, ‘The speckled ones will be your wages,’ then all the flocks gave birth to speckled young; and if he said, ‘The streaked ones will be your wages,’ then all the flocks bore streaked young. 9 So God has taken away your father’s livestock and has given them to me.