But Esau ran to meet Jacob and embraced him; he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. And they wept. Then Esau looked up and saw the women and children. “Who are these with you?” he asked. Jacob answered, “They are the children God has graciously given your servant.” Genesis 33:4-5
When was the last time a situation occurred the exact opposite of what you thought would happen? You were really fretting, worrying, or scared that something bad or negative would occur but instead, it ended up being an absolutely wonderful or a truly blessed experience? It happens all of the time doesn’t it? We don’t always celebrate it the way that we should, but sometimes God really does take sour lemons and makes delicious and refreshing lemonade out of them.
My mom often jokes about our family train trip from Los Angeles, California to Winter Haven, Florida. I was 14, almost 15, my brother would have been 8 and we were traveling in a sleeper car for 3 days as a family heading back from our adventures out west. Well what should have been 3 days turned into 5 and we barely made it back to Winter Haven before my 15 birthday. There was no way I was celebrating my birthday on that never-ending train ride. Now was it really that bad? No not at all, just boring for both me and my brother. As my mom likes to say though, it was the best trip because it’s the one we talk about the most. It gave us an opportunity that we don’t normally have to actually spend time together without all of the interruptions in life. Even now, 20 years later, we can all still recall it rather vividly.
The story of Esau’s and Jacob’s reunion is one which could have been written very differently. Because of the Lord’s promise, Esau forgave Jacob and they we able to restore their brotherly relationship. Where there was hate, now peace and love prevailed. I love happy endings and the fact that Jacob went out of his way to try and bless his brother during their reconciliation and to pray to God first before over analyzing the situation, Jacob allowed God to move the mountains that needed to be moved.
We never know exactly what God has planned but we do know that He holds the future, so it’s up to us to hold tight onto Him and let Him lead the way.
God of Reconciliation, we pray for those relationships that need a Jacob and Esau reunion. We pray for opportunities for forgiveness, peace, and hope. Grant us encouragement and faith as we await those times. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.