Difficult conversations!

Are you ready to have it? Are you willing to have it? Are you going to have it?

Is it triggered by a subject? Is it triggered by something you did? Is it triggered by a situation? Is it triggered by a response?

In life we will be faced with situation where we need to have those difficult situations.

How will you respond? Awkward silence? Over thinking it? Head on?

Will you turn to God? Will you grab a hold of Him till He gives you an answer? Will you grab a hold of Him till He directs you? What are you going to do?

Today’s reading finds us with Jacob finishing up a visit with his father in law and preparing to face his brother… Can you say difficult? Can you say awkward? Let’s see him face it…

1Early in the morning Laban got up, kissed his grandchildren and daughters and blessed them. Then Laban left and returned to his place.
2While Jacob left on his way, the angels of God met him.
3Then Jacob said when he saw them, “This is God’s camp,” and he named that place Mahanaim.

Jacob Prepares to Meet Esau

4Then Jacob sent messengers before him to his brother Esau, to the land of Seir, the field of Edom.
5He also commanded them saying, “This is what you should say to my lord, to Esau: ‘This is what your servant Jacob said: I’ve been staying with Laban, and have lingered until now.
6Now I’ve come to possess oxen and donkeys, flocks, male servants and female servants. I sent word to tell my lord, in order to find favor in your eyes.’”
7The messengers returned to Jacob saying, “We went to your brother, to Esau, and he’s also coming out to meet you—and 400 men with him.”
8So Jacob became extremely afraid and distressed. He divided the people with him, along with the flocks and herds and camels, into two camps,
9for he thought, “If Esau comes to one camp and strikes it, the camp that’s left will escape.”
10Then Jacob said, “O God of my father Abraham, and God of my father Isaac, Adonai, who said to me, ‘Return to your land and to your relatives and I will do good with you.’
11I am unworthy of all the proofs of mercy and of all the dependability that you have shown to your servant. For with only my staff I crossed over this Jordan, and now I’ve become two camps.
12Deliver me, please, from my brother’s hand, from Esau’s hand, for I’m afraid of him that he’ll come and strike me—the mothers with the children.
13You Yourself said, ‘I will most certainly do good with you, and will make your seed like the sand of the sea that cannot be counted because of its abundance.’”
14So he stayed overnight there. Then from all that had come into his possession he took an offering for Esau his brother:
15 200 female goats, 20 billy goats, 200 ewes, 20 rams,
16 30 milking camels with their young, 40 cows, 10 bulls, 20 female donkeys and 10 male donkeys.
17He put them in the hands of his servants, each herd by itself, and he said to his servants, “Pass over before me, and put a gap between each of the herds.”
18Then he commanded the first one saying, “When my brother Esau meets you and asks you saying, ‘To whom do you belong, and where are you going, and to whom do all these before you belong?’
19then you are to say, ‘To your servant, to Jacob—it’s an offering sent to my lord, to Esau. And look, he’s also behind us.’”
20And he also commanded the second one, the third one, and all those who were going behind the flocks, saying, “Say the same exact thing to Esau when you find him.
21Then you are to say, ‘Look, your servant Jacob is also behind us.’” For he thought, “Let me appease him with the offering that goes ahead of me, and afterward see his face, perhaps he’ll lift up my face.”
22So the offering passed over ahead of him, while he spent that night in the camp.
23Then he got up that night and took his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven sons, and crossed over the ford of the Jabbok.
24He took them and sent them across the stream, and he sent across whatever he had.

Jacob Wrestles With God

25So Jacob remained all by himself. Then a man wrestled with him until the break of dawn.
26When He saw that He had not overcome him, He struck the socket of his hip, so He dislocated the socket of Jacob’s hip when He wrestled with him.
27Then He said, “Let Me go, for the dawn has broken.” But he said, “I won’t let You go unless You bless me.”
28Then He said to him, “What is your name?” “Jacob,” he said.
29Then He said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but rather Israel, for you have struggled with God and with men, and you have overcome.”
30Then Jacob asked and said, “Please tell me Your name.” But He said, “What’s this—you are asking My name?” Then He blessed him there.
31So Jacob named the place Peniel, “for I’ve seen God face to face, and my life has been spared.”
32Now the sun rose upon him just as he crossed by Peniel—limping because of his hip.
33That is why the children of Israel do not eat the tendon of the hip socket, to this very day, because He struck the socket of Jacob’s thigh on the tendon of the hip.
–from Genesis 32

Ever heard of leader walking with a limp? Ever heard of leader who’ve had a name change? Ever asked them why they have a limp? Ever asked them when the change happened?

We see Jacob aka Israel prepare to see his brother and how he will have the difficult conversation…Imagine if it was only going to be difficult in your head and when it was about to happen it wasn’t as hard as you had thought? Don’t be your own biggest blocker. Trust God! Be prepared! Allow it to work itself out through honest and open conversations.

Jacob Meets Esau

1Then Jacob glanced up and saw, behold, there was Esau coming—and 400 men with him. So he divided the children among Leah, Rachel and the two female servants.
2He put the female servants and their children first, then Leah and her children behind them, then Rachel and Joseph behind them.
3But he himself passed on ahead of them, and bowed to the ground seven times until he came near to his brother.
4But Esau ran to meet him, hugged him, fell on his neck and kissed him—and they wept.
5His eyes glanced up and he saw the women and the children, and said, “Who are these with you?” “The children whom God has graciously given your servant,” he said.
6Then the female servants approached, they and their children, and bowed down.
7Leah also approached, along with her children, and they bowed down, and finally, Joseph and Rachel approached and bowed down.
8“What do you mean by this whole caravan that I’ve met?” So he said, “To find favor in your eyes, my lord.”
9But Esau said, “I have plenty! O my brother, do keep all that belongs to you.”
10Yet Jacob said, “No, please! If I have found favor in your eyes, then you will take my offering from my hand. For this is the reason I’ve seen your face—it is like seeing the face of God—and you’ve accepted me!
11Please, take my blessing that was brought to you, because God has been gracious to me, and because I have everything.” So he kept urging him until he accepted.
12Then he said, “Let’s journey and be on our way, and I’ll go ahead of you.
13He continued, “My lord knows that the children are tender, and that the flocks and the cattle in my care are nursing. So if they were pushed hard just one day, all the flocks would die.
14Please, let my lord pass on ahead of your servant, and I’ll move on further gradually, at a pace suited to the livestock that are before me and at a pace suited to the children, until I come to my lord in Seir.”
15Then Esau said, “Please let me leave with you some of the people who are with me.” But he said, “What’s this? Let me find favor in my lord’s eyes.”
16So on that day Esau returned on his way to Seir,
17but Jacob journeyed to Sukkot and built a house for himself, and for his livestock he made booths. That is the reason that place is called Sukkot.
18So Jacob arrived in shalom to the city of Shechem, which is in the land of Canaan, when he came from Paddan-aram, and camped right in front of the city.
19He purchased the portion of the field there where he had pitched his tent from the sons of Hamor, Shechem’s father, for 100 pieces of money.
20There he set up an altar, and he called it, El is Israel’s God.
–from Genesis 33

God’s got great plans for you! God’s calling you to great and mighty things! God’s for you!

Don’t allow the enemy to rob you of the joy God has planned for you! Grab a hold of His promises and His wisdom and His direction and walk it out! God can take the past and use it for the future! We can’t allow the past to control our future! Let’s grab a hold of God and allow Him to work in and through us for the glory of His Kingdom! Don’t allow doubts and fears from the past to control the steps of faith and the hope for the future!

Stop and talk to God! Stop and allow Him to answer! It’s not a monologue it’s a dialogue! It’s supposed to be a conversation, not a speech! I lift it all up into your hands Lord and put my hope and trust in You! There will always be people who try to stir up trouble. There will always be naysayers who work against you. But in whom will you put your trust and what will you do? As for me and my house we will serve the Lord!

Today’s reading continues into the book of Acts.

Mixed Crowds Believe Amidst Persecution

1Now in Iconium, the same thing happened—they entered as usual into the Jewish synagogue and spoke in such a way that a large number of Jewish and Greek people believed.
2But the Jewish people who would not believe stirred up the Gentiles and poisoned their minds against the brothers.
3So they stayed there a considerable time, speaking boldly in the Lord—who was testifying to the message of His grace, granting signs and wonders to come about by their hands.
4But the population of the city split; some were with the Jewish leaders and some were with the emissaries.
5Now it happened that an attempt was made by both the Gentiles and Jewish people, along with their rulers, to abuse and stone them.
6But they found out about it and fled to the Lycaonian cities of Lystra and Derbe and the surrounding countryside.
7There they proclaimed the Good News.
8Now a man was sitting in Lystra without strength in his feet, lame from birth, who had never walked.
9This man heard Paul speaking. When Paul looked intently at him and saw that he had faith to be healed,
10he said with a loud voice, “Stand right up! On your feet!” And the man leaped up and began to walk around!
11Now the crowd, seeing what Paul had done, lifted up their voices, saying in Lycaonian, “The gods have become like men and come down to us!”
12And they began calling Barnabas “Zeus” and Paul “Hermes” (because he was the main speaker).
13The priest of Zeus, whose temple was before the front gate of the city, brought bulls and garlands; he wanted to offer a sacrifice with the people.
14But when the emissaries Barnabas and Paul heard of it, they tore their clothes and rushed out among the crowd, crying out
15and saying, “Men, why are you doing these things? We too are human, just like you! We proclaim the Good News to you, telling you to turn from these worthless things to the living God, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and all that is in them.
16In past generations He allowed all the nations to go their own ways.
17Yet He did not leave Himself without a witness—He did good by giving you rain from heaven and fruitful seasons, filling your hearts with joy and gladness.”
18Even saying these things, they barely restrained the crowd from sacrificing to them.
19But Jewish people came from Antioch and Iconium; and after they won the crowd over and stoned Paul, they were dragging him out of the city, supposing him to be dead.
20But while the disciples surrounded him, he got up and went back into the city. On the next day he left with Barnabas for Derbe.
21After proclaiming the Good News to that city and making many disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch.
22They were strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to persevere in faith, and saying, “It is through many persecutions that we must enter the kingdom of God.”
23When they had handpicked elders for them in every community, and prayed with fasting, they placed them in the care of the Lord—in whom they had put their trust.
24Then they passed through Pisidia and came to Pamphyllia.
25After speaking the message in Perga, they went down to Attalia.
26From there they sailed back to Antioch (where they had been entrusted to the gracious care of God for the work now completed).
27When they arrived and gathered together Messiah’s community, they began to report all that God had done in helping them and that He had opened a door of faith to the Gentiles.
28And they stayed quite awhile with the disciples.
–from Acts 14

So in this world we will face troubles, but take hope for Jesus has overcome the world!

So in this world we will face trials of many kinds, but consider it pure joy for when it completes it’s work, we will be complete and lacking nothing!

Will life be easy? No. Will it be worth it if we walk it out? Yes.

Let’s put on the full armor of God today and be ready for whatever comes our way!

As we conclude today’s reading we go into Matthew…Will you trust Jesus? Will you not only answer the call but follow the call on your life? Trust Him! Even in the storms of life! Keep your eyes and your focus on Jesus and live out the plans, the purpose, and the miracles He has planned to do in and through you!

Healing Those who Trust

1When He came down from the mountain, large crowds followed Him.
2And a man with tza’arat came to Him and bowed down before Him, saying, “Master, if You are willing, You can make me clean.”
3Yeshua stretched out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing. Be cleansed.” Immediately his tza’arat was cleansed.
4And Yeshua said to him, “See that you tell no one; but go show yourself to the kohen and offer the gift that Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”
5Now when Yeshua came into Capernaum, a centurion came begging for help.
6“Master,” he said, “my servant is lying at home paralyzed, horribly tormented.”
7Yeshua said to him, “I’ll come and heal him.”
8But the centurion said, “Master, I’m not worthy to have You come under my roof. But just say the word and my servant will be healed.
9For I also am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I say to this one, ‘Go!’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come!’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this!’ and he does it.”
10Now when Yeshua heard this, He marveled and said to those who were following, “Amen, I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith!
11Moreover, I tell you that many will come from the east and the west, and they will recline at table with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven.
12But the sons of the kingdom will be driven out into the outer darkness; in that place will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
13Then Yeshua said to the centurion, “Go. As you have believed, let it be done for you.” And the servant was healed in that same hour.
14And when Yeshua came into Peter’s house, He saw Peter’s mother-in-law lying down, sick with a fever.
15Yeshua touched her hand, and the fever left her. Then she got up and began to take care of Him.
16When evening came, the people brought to Him many who were afflicted by demons. He forced out the spirits with a word and healed all who were sick.
17So was fulfilled what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet, saying, “He Himself took our sicknesses and carried away our diseases.”

Following the Call

18Now when Yeshua saw a crowd around Him, He gave orders to go to the other side of the sea.
19Then a Torah scholar came to Him and said, “Teacher, I will follow You wherever You go.”
20Yeshua tells him, “Foxes have dens and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.”
21Then another of the disciples said, “Master, first let me go and bury my father.”
22But Yeshua tells him, “Follow Me, and let the dead bury their own dead.”

Master of the Storm

23As He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him.
24Suddenly a great storm arose on the sea, so that the boat was being covered by the waves. But Yeshua kept on sleeping.
25So they came and woke Him up, saying, “Master, save us! We’re perishing!”
26He said to them, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?” Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, and it became totally calm.
27The men were amazed, saying, “What kind of person is this? Even the winds and the sea obey Him!”

Freedom from Demons

28When He came to the other side, into the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-plagued men coming from the graveyard met Him. They were so violent that no one could pass by that way.
29And they screamed, “What’s between You and us, Ben-Elohim? Have You come here to torment us, before the appointed time?”
30Now a large herd of pigs was feeding some distance away from them.
31The demons kept begging Him, “If You drive us out, send us into the herd of pigs.”
32And He told them, “Go!” So they came out and went into the pigs, and the whole herd rushed down the cliff into the sea and drowned.
33The herdsmen ran away, went into the town, and told everything, including what had happened to the demon-plagued men.
34The whole town came out to meet Yeshua. And when they saw him, they begged Him to leave their region.
–from Matthew 8





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