October 07, 2020

Home Away from Home

Genesis 29:1-14

Laban said to him, “You are my own flesh and blood.”

—  Genesis 29:14

When you’ve made a mess of your life, you need a safe place to land.

After a long journey, Jacob, running for his life, arrives at the home of his uncle. These are “his” people, his mother’s family. This, surely, should be a good place to begin rebuilding his life. The fact that God had guided him to this spot—and Laban’s warm welcome—must have reassured Jacob. He would have a home away from home.

Perhaps “your” people are a group of friends to whom God has led you, people who will stick with you through good times and hard times. Perhaps you’ve made a mess of your life, but God has led you to find reliable support in a recovery group or even in prison. Sometimes God graciously pro­vides us safe places, as he does for Jacob, so that we can begin growing and rebuilding our lives.

But the most important change God works in our lives is not in our circumstances or our location; it is in our hearts. God may sometimes grant a reprieve from the effects of our sin. But as Jacob will learn, God continues to pursue us until we rest in his grace alone.

The only place to truly be at home is at the cross of Christ, where sins are forgiven and messed-up lives are made new. Won’t you flee to Jesus today?

Holy Spirit, thank you for providing places of temporary refuge in the midst of our harried lives. Keep directing us toward the true rest that is in Christ alone. Amen.

About the author — Joel Vande Werken

Joel Vande Werken has been a pastor since 2007, serving churches in Sussex, New Jersey, and in Whitinsville, Massachusetts. He and his wife, Brandie, have five young children.

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