“God spoke to Israel in visions of the night, and said, ‘Jacob, Jacob.’ And he said, ‘Here I am.’ Then God said, ‘I am God, the God of your fathers; do not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for I will make of you a great nation there.’” Genesis 46:2-3
Jacob/Israel was coming to the end of his long life. He was old and had a large family. We can well imagine that his intent was to make his transition from this life in his comfortable homeland of Canaan. That was where he was familiar and entrenched. That’s the land he had spent his life on. That is where the people were that he knew.
Maybe Jacob/Israel thought that he was winding down; that God was pretty much finished with him. He had done his job, been faithful, followed God’s way. Now it was time to coast to the end. A gentle landing. But instead, he finds himself moving to a new country; family, flocks and all. It’s a huge transition but not the one he was expecting to make ending his life on earth. This is a big, unexpected change into a new future here in this life.
Sometimes we may feel that God is not active or present in our lives. We may feel that God is quiet in our lives. We may wonder why we don’t get more direction or intimation of a godly nature in our lives. But maybe we are getting the signals and we are ignoring them. Maybe we are being called to make great changes but we are comfortable with things as they are. Maybe we are being sent in new directions but we are turning off our GPS to God because we don’t want to head that way. We like how things are going. We don’t want our apple cart upset. We don’t want to be bothered with drastic change. We just want to coast. But there can be a lot of friction to deal with when we coast against God.
When life is good and we are happy, we may resist change. When we are struggling, we may resist the kind of change God intends for our good. May we keep listening with openness and a sensitivity to our resistance. Amen.