So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. Then the man said, “Let me go, for it is daybreak.” But Jacob replied, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” Genesis 32:24-26 NIV
We often think of needing courage for a battle ahead. When the threat of attack closes in, it's time to pick up our courage. But, do you ever think of needing courage in your relationship with God? Of course, you can have a distant relationship at no real cost of courage. But, the intimate relationship with God that you long for will take courage on your part.
Jacob had this courage. He wrestled with this angelic visitor (who many commentators call Jesus) for many hours. How Jacob lasted that long, I'll never know (good question for him in heaven). But the fact is - Jacob held onto this man and would not let him go until he received a blessing.
Jacob wasn't content to just know about God. He wasn't even content only to wrestle with him. Jacob wanted more. He hung on for the blessing. What a privilege to know the closeness of the Father and also to receive his words of affirmation. It took courage for Jacob to keep wrestling and holding out for the blessing.
This story tells us a lot about God. He engages with us. He loves relating with us in a close way. God did not take away Jacob's initiative in wrestling and calling out for a blessing. I believe God loved the interaction and Jacob's determination to be blessed. He admired Jacob's courage.
Jacob even recognized his own courageous and very risky behavior. He states later, "I saw God face to face, and yet my life was spared" (Genesis 32:30 NIV). It takes courage to be intimate. Would you grab onto God and call out for his affirmation? Could you do that? Would it be appropriate?
Oh yes it would. God longs for you to engage with him like that. He waits for your pursuit… for your courageous pursuit toward intimacy. He loves the wrestle. He loves you.
Missionary. Teacher. Worship Leader. Deeply desiring to make God's Word accessible and understandable to all. May you be transformed as God's Word fills your life.