Bible Reading: Genesis 32:24-31
Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to others and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
For some of us our relationship with God has seemed like a wrestling match at times. We almost see him as an opponent who's fighting against us. And yet we don't dare let him go because we know that without God's help we're lost.
Jacob had a strange experience. He was in camp alone "and a man came and wrestled with him until the dawn began to break. When the man saw that he would not win the match, he touched Jacob's hip and wrenched it out of its socket. Then the man said, ‘Let me go, for the dawn is breaking!' But Jacob said, ‘I will not let you go unless you bless me.' ‘What is your name?' the man asked. He replied, ‘Jacob.' . . . ‘From now on you will be called Israel, because you have fought with God and with men and have won.' ‘Please tell me your name,' Jacob said. ‘Why do you want to know my name?' the man replied. Then he blessed Jacob there. Jacob named the place Peniel (which means ‘face of God'), for he said, ‘I have seen God face to face, yet my life has been spared.' The sun was rising as Jacob left Peniel, and he was limping because of the injury to his hip" (Genesis 32:24-31).
Jacob had a real wrestling match with God. He went away with a new name and God's blessing, but he also was limping. We may have to wrestle with God as he changes who we are. But if we refuse to let go of God, he will bless us. Those of us who wrestle with God may also come away with a "limp" to remind us of the intensity of the struggle which led to our new identity.
Holding on to God is always rewarded by his blessing.
Taken from The Life Recovery Devotional: Thirty Meditations from Scripture for Each Step in Recovery by Stephen Arterburn and David Stoop. Copyright © 1991 by Stephen Arterburn and David Stoop. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.