Scripture: Genesis 29:1- Genesis 30:24
Rachel was “beloved” by Jacob. Genesis 29 goes to explain just how “beloved” she really was.
“While he was still speaking with them, Rachel came with her father’s sheep, for she was a shepherdess.When Jacob saw Rachel the daughter of Laban his mother’s brother, and the sheep of Laban his mother’s brother, Jacob went up and rolled the stone from the mouth of the well and watered the flock of Laban his mother’s brother. Then Jacob kissed Rachel, and lifted his voice and wept.” (Genesis 29:9-11)
From the moment Jacob saw Rachel, he was in love. That same love lasted fourteen years of serving Rachel’s father prior to marrying her, and for the rest of their marriage, but Rachel was overtaken by jealousy for her sister and was unaware of how beloved she was.
After the first seven years of Jacob’s service, Rachel’s father tricked Jacob by giving him Leah, Rachel’s older sister whom Jacob didn’t love; however, Jacob was a man of God and remained loyal to Leah while pursuing Rachel for another seven years.
Fast forward, Jacob now has Leah and Rachel as wifes and has a few sons from Leah and none from Rachel. Rachel begins to feel crushed. She knows that she is the “beloved wife” and Leah is not, but she fears that her child-bearing sister will become Jacob’s favorite (sisterly rivals happened in Bible times too!)
This rivalry continues, both sister wives gave their maids to Jacob and has son’s through their maids. After a few years, Leah was blessed with another child (a total of seven) and thus, Rachel felt inadequate and abandoned by her Lord.
Let’s pause this story. Let’s be totally honest here… have we ever felt forgotten by God? Have we ever felt inadequate for his love? For the purpose of this story, we are the Rachels and God is Jacob. God loved us from the first time He saw us. He has been pursuing us every day of our life. When trouble comes along and struggles cause us to feel forgotten and jealous, does God still love us? Did Jacob ever stop loving Rachel? Of corse not! Jacob loved Rachel whether she gave him sons or not.
“Then God remembered Rachel, and God gave heed to her and opened her womb. So she conceived and bore a son and said, ‘God has taken away my reproach.’ She named him Joseph, saying, ‘May the Lord give me another son.’ (Genesis 30:22-24)
But wait, “Then God remembered Rachel”? When I first read this verse, I was shocked! “God really did forget Rachel”, I thought. #shereadstruth helped me understand what really happened. This is how they explain it,
“But if we look around in Genesis a bit, we discover this isn’t the first time “God remembered” one of His children. In Genesis 8:1, God remembers Noah and His creation and saves them.Genesis 19:29 says, “God remembered Abraham and brought Lot out of the middle of the upheaval when He demolished the cities where Lot had lived.” When God remembers someone, it’s always followed by a beneficial act.
Now, let’s try the opposite exercise. Where in Scripture do we read that God has forgotten someone? When I search, I come up short. Instead, I find verses like this:
But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.
– Isaiah 43:1
O Lord, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways.
– Psalm 139:1-3
He has remembered his steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
– Psalm 98:3
Look, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; your walls are continually before Me.
– Isaiah 49:16
And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.
– Matthew 28:20 ”
Once I read that, I realized that God hadn’t forgotten Rachel. “remembering” in this context is blessing. Rachel’s worth in God’s eyes was not from the lack of child-bearing or the beauty that Jacob saw in her. God had “inscribed her on the palms of His hands.” How could he forget her? He couldn’t!
What does that mean for us? If we are the Rachel’s, that means that God will never forget us either. We will never stop being beloved and pursued.
XOXO, The Christian Prepster