When Faith Becomes Reality

When Faith Becomes Reality

Written by Katelyn Foster

“And Jacob rose up early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put for his pillows, and set it up for a pillar, and poured oil upon the top of it. And he called the name of that place Bethel…” Genesis 28:18-19

The sun had set when Jacob chose a rock for a pillow. He had just upset his entire family structure and dynamic, and his parents instructed him to flee from his brother’s wrath. So he ran until the darkness became his safety. Jacob laid down in the dirt to sleep between home and the unknown with a rock for a pillow, and dust for blankets. 

This place is where God appeared to Jacob for the first time. Up to this point, Jacob had grown accustomed to having things handed to him. He lived on his parents’ faith. But that night, in the middle of the mess Jacob himself had created, God appeared. His presence invited Jacob to make his faith his own. That night, God made Jacob some promises: 

    • To give Jacob the land where he was resting as his heritage.  
    • To give offspring, outnumbering the dust that he was now lying in. 
    • And to Jacob personally, God promised His presence. 

God promised to bring Jacob home, and He promised to never leave his side until every promise was fulfilled. Still Jacob was unsure. The ‘trickster’ was skeptical of trusting. So he made a vow and put God to the test. 

“And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on so that I come again to my father’s house in peace; then shall the Lord be my God.”

In the middle of the night, Jacob invited God to show Himself. And God did. Over the next couple of decades, God kept His promises, and Jacob got to know God in unique ways. 

    • When God appeared in a dream, Jacob saw Him as a God who sees the past and the future. 
    • When deceived over and over by his father-in-law, Jacob found God as just. 
    • When Jacob finds himself embracing his estranged brother Esau, he sees God as Promise Keeper. 

Have you lived through a night season where God showed up? I want to encourage you to make your own reminders of these moments. Write them down, hang a picture in your home, place the date next to the timely verse in your Bible. 

Simple “rocks” can be generational reminders that foster faith in our hearts. God’s presence makes the mundane monumental, and a pillow rock becomes the reminder of a faithful promise. 

Maybe you wonder if God’s orchestrating your story. Remember that God is the Author of your every moment. Rest assured, His fingerprints are in each chapter of your life. And when you recognize those clues, make a memorial. God showed up for Jacob, and He will for you, too.

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