Genesis 28: 15-16
And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of. And Jacob awakened out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not.
You will face times in your life when you are discouraged, frightened, or uncertain. In the book of Ecclesiastes, King Solomon wrote,
“I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.” (Ecclesiastes 9:11)
Mistakes you have made or circumstances beyond your control can cause your future to become unpredictable. This was the case for Abraham’s grandson Jacob. After tricking his brother Esau out of his birthright, he didn’t have any assurances about his future.
When he set out on a 450-mile journey, running from his brother, he didn’t even know if his basic needs would be met. Yet 70 miles into his travels, he laid his weary head on a rock, fell asleep, and the Lord appeared to him in a dream. God knew that Jacob needed peace about his future and so He gave him four principles to help him overcome his uncertainty.
Those same principles apply to you today as you face the ambiguity of 2022.
1. Remember God’s Promises
The first thing God does for Jacob is to remind him of the promises He made to his father and grandfather saying,
” I am the LORD God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed.” (Genesis 28:13-14)
When you are facing uncertain times, you need to open your bible and rehearse its promises. Whatever you are facing, nothing is too hard for God. Whatever He has promised you through His word, He is able to perform. Paul picked it up saying, “For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.” (2 Corinthians 1:20)
2. Remember God’s Presence
Jacob was all by himself. He surely felt frightened and alone on His journey, but God encouraged him and assured him by saying,
“And, behold, I am with thee…” (Genesis 28:15)
Whatever difficulty you encounter, you are not alone. You serve all-powerful and all-knowing God. This does not mean that you will escape the storms of life, but it does mean that in the midst of trouble, you can have peace and confidence in Christ in the midst of uncertainty. After Jesus’ resurrection, He comforted the disciples with these words promising,
“… lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” (Matthew 28:20)
God’s promise to you is the same; in whatever you go through, He is with you.
3. Remember God’s Protection
Jacob didn’t know what was going to happen to Him going forward, but God calmed his fears, affirming that He would be his protection. The Lord said,
“…and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest…” (Genesis 28:15)
You may not know what will happen to you in 2022, but God offers you the same promise He made Jacob. He will protect you. You don’t need to fear the dangers that may lay ahead of you this year. God has promised to watch over you. God’s promise is not one to protect you from harm, but He will protect you from hurt. You may face sickness, troublesome family issues, or worries about your job, but in the end, they will not hurt you!
King David proclaimed in Psalm 116,
“Gracious [is] the LORD, and righteous; yea, our God [is] merciful. The LORD preserveth the simple: I was brought low,and he helped me. Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the LORD hath dealt bountifully with thee. For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, [and] my feet from falling. I will walk before the LORD in the land of the living.” (Psalm 116: 5-9)
David understood that whatever came against him, God would deliver him. Those same mercies and assurances are yours as God’s child.
4. Remember God’s Provision
When God spoke to Jacob promising to keep him (v.15), He used a Hebrew word, šāmar, which has a two-fold meaning, indicating that God would both protect Jacob and provide for Him in declaring:
“[I] will keep (šāmar) thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.” (Genesis 28:15)
Jacob understood exactly what God meant. He knew that every future need, God would supply. Similarly, you have a promise from God that He will meet your material needs as you journey with Him. The Apostle Paul encouraged the church at Philippi saying,
“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” (Phil 4:19)
Don’t worry or be anxious about anything. Confess your needs to God and trust Him. Just as He was with Jacob, He will be with you. You may not know how your need will be met, but leave the process to God and rejoice in His promises to keep you.
Are you facing an uncertain future? Reflect on these principles and cast all your cares on Christ.
He cares about you!
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