READING: Genesis 29-30, Matthew 9:1-17
“So Jacob worked seven years for Rachel, and they seemed like only a few days to him because of his love for her.” Genesis 29:20
Seven years are a long time. 364 weeks. More than 2500 days. That’s the amount of time needed for a child to go from kindergarten to junior high school. It’s how long it takes for that child to enter his teen years, start and graduate from high school, learn to drive, enter adulthood, and complete at least two years of college. A girl might move from seventh grade to marriage and motherhood in those years. Almost two United States presidential terms will be completed in that amount of time. In my own life, I’ll be eligible for an early retirement by the time the next seven years pass.
That’s also how long Jacob served Laban after Laban tricked him into marrying Leah rather than his beloved Rachel. And, Jacob did it willingly because he so loved Rachel. In fact, seven years seemed to him "like only a few days" (Gen. 29:20) because the intensity of his love made the days pass quickly. The wait never became anything less than a compelling expectation that made him look forward to tomorrow.
I pray that’s the way I would love God. I’ve been a follower of Christ now for more than forty years, but it seems like just yesterday that I talked with a pastor in Ohio and told him I wanted to be a Christian. I can still remember exactly where I sat during that worship service, what I said to the pastor toward the end of the service, and how I felt as he told the congregation I was a new believer. The pastor baptized me the next week, and the church welcomed me warmly into their fellowship. I gained a family that day that I never knew existed prior to that point.
I celebrate those memories that still seem so recent. If God gives me another forty years of life, though, I want the next forty years to seem like “only a few days,” too. I want to so look forward to seeing Jesus that I’m compelled to work faithfully for Him until then, ever looking to the Author and Perfector of my faith (Heb. 12:2), running the race with abandon to hear Him say, “Well done.” I desire to live with an undying expectation of being with my Redeemer. Whatever time He gives me, regardless of what I face in the years to come, will be just a few days compared to eternity with Him.
- Take some time to remember the early days of your walk with God. Rejoice over the memories.
- Ask God to create in you such a love for Him that you long to be in His presence.
PRAYER: “God, give me that kind of longing for You. I want to serve You faithfully, living in the expectation of seeing Jesus.”
TOMORROW'S READING: Genesis 31-32, Matthew 9:18-38