Time Out (by Jerry Schmoyer)
‘”Do unto others before they do unto you” seems to be the life motto of many people these days. Some have worked hard to perfect that lifestyle. Others just seem to be their victims. Often those who can claw and fight their way to the top of the food chain are envied by others, even if they aren’t liked. Getting the results we want seems to be the final goal, no matter how it is done. But that’s nothing new.
Jacob was good at that. He tricked his father Isaac and his twin brother Esau. He ended up with the largest part of the inheritance, as well as the generational blessing, both of which should have gone to his older brother. The down side was that he had to leave his family to protect his life and he never saw his mother again. She was the one who had helped him hone his skills of deception and trickery. But he met his match when he went to stay with Uncle Laban. After working for him for 7 years in order to marry his daughter Rachel, Jacob ended u with her sister Leah instead. That cost him another 7 years of labor to complete the deal. Things eventually turned out all right for everyone but Leah! But what about Jacob?
Finally he had to return home and face the music – his brother Esau. Finally there were no more manipulations or shady dealings Jacob could come up with to protect himself. So finally he had to throw himself on God’s mercy. After an all night wrestling match Jacob came to his limit, he hit bottom and had to submit to God. Then he found that Gods ways and God’s powers are better than anything he could do to try and control his own life.
Are you trying to direct your own life, doing whatever it takes to get what you feel you deserve? That is a dead-end street. It’s an empty, stressful, self-centered existence. Sooner or later you must come to Jesus, submit it all to Him, and trust Him to handle it in His way. Why put that off? Submit to Him now whatever you are trying to control – trust Him with it. It’ll give you a new start just as it did Jacob.
Galatians 6:7-10, “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. et us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.”
Job 4:8, “As I have observed, those who plow evil and those who sow trouble reap it.”
Proverbs 1:31, “they will eat the fruit of their ways and be filled with the fruit of their schemes.”
Matthew 6:12, “Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.”
Luke 6:37-38, “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.”
- How has the principle of reaping and sowing played itself out in your life?
- Would you want God to treat you as you treat others? If not, where can you improve.
- Do you see any relationship between the mercy God shows you and the mercy you show others?
Jerry Schmoyer has been a minister in Pennsylvania for over 25 years and has worked with teenagers for 14 years, ever since I became one myself. He authors the weekly Time Out series here at Life in Student Ministry in hopes to spiritually refresh your soul as you continually pour so much of yourself into students. God bless!
Posted on November 3, 2008