JACOB AND ESAU, A RELATIONSHIP RESTORED
“But Esau ran to meet him and embraced him and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept.” Genesis 33:4 (ESV)
Every four years, it is so exciting to watch the winter Olympics! The time and dedication displayed makes it all look so easy. As I was watching the pairs figure skating in Sochi, I noticed how effortlessly both partners were moving across the ice, mimicking movements perfected by practice as the music wafted over the air. I couldn’t help to think how their program was even more beautiful because their movements were carved in harmony. Then it hit me. There’s something powerful about harmony and forgiveness, especially when it’s experienced with those very close to us.
At one time, Jacob and Esau had no such harmony. For the price of a meal Esau sold his privilege and blessing as the first born. In a moment, Rebekah, Jacob’s mother, had conspired with him to trick his father Isaac into thinking he was Esau in order to receive the blessing of the first born. From that one day came bitterness, anger, guilt, and most of all, fear. After many years and miles apart, God began to work through these two brothers as they went their separate ways. When they met again, there was great fear on Jacob’s part (Genesis 33:1). However, “…Esau ran to meet him and embraced him…” (Genesis 33:4). One man forgave, and the other received forgiveness. In one day, their relationship was destroyed. On this day, however, their relationship was restored as they reunited.
This was nothing short of God’s redemptive work between two brothers. The same God who raised their relationship from the dead is still the same God who can work mightily in our relationships with our family. It’s extremely hard when we are betrayed by those who are close to us. However, we can’t let unforgiveness steal the blessings we have as believers in Christ. It’s time to let go. It’s time to heal. It’s time to reunite.
Practical Application: Is there someone, family or friend, with whom you’ve lost contact? Pray for them and give them a call, text, or email. After all, they may be trying to come up with courage to initiate forgiveness as well.