Borders are helpful because they ‘frame’ the world around us into usable spaces. Yet, some borders can seem to be an inconvenience due to the restrictions they impose. In today’s sermon podcast, Pastor Marcy shares biblical principles from the life of the Old Testament patriarch Jacob. In the story of an encounter with the Angel of the LORD at Bethel (“House of God”), Jacob undergoes confrontation and transformation, which allows him to MOVE ON from his past and present struggles into a future blessed by God’s promise to make him “the son of my right hand”.
So, how do we MOVE ON from our past and present struggles as well? First, we must stop clinging to our past and allow God to define us according to His promises. Second, we cannot stay stuck in our present struggles. Don’t ‘settle’ in the place where you are. The Good Shepherd will lead you to still waters and green pastures (cf. Psalm 23). Third, we must MOVE ON. Just as Jacob did, ask God to bless you. God will create new “boundary lines” which will fall for you in delightful places (cf. Psalm 16:6).
Genesis 35:16-21 (NIV)
Jacob Returns to Bethel
The Deaths of Rachel and Isaac
16 Then they moved on from Bethel. While they were still some distance from Ephrath, Rachel began to give birth and had great difficulty. 17 And as she was having great difficulty in childbirth, the midwife said to her, “Don’t despair, for you have another son.” 18 As she breathed her last—for she was dying—she named her son Ben-Oni. But his father named him Benjamin.
19 So Rachel died and was buried on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem). 20 Over her tomb Jacob set up a pillar, and to this day that pillar marks Rachel’s tomb.
21 Israel moved on again and pitched his tent beyond Migdal Eder.