Take some time today, tomorrow, and Saturday and read the text for this upcoming Sunday in our series on “Wrestling with God”. This week’s sermon is from Genesis 29:15 – 30 “The Love Struggle”.
 Then Laban said to Jacob, “Because you are my kinsman, should you therefore serve me for nothing? Tell me, what shall your wages be?”  Now Laban had two daughters. The name of the older was Leah, and the name of the younger was Rachel.  Leah’s eyes were weak, but Rachel was beautiful in form and appearance.  Jacob loved Rachel. And he said, “I will serve you seven years for your younger daughter Rachel.”  Laban said, “It is better that I give her to you than that I should give her to any other man; stay with me.”  So Jacob served seven years for Rachel, and they seemed to him but a few days because of the love he had for her.
 Then Jacob said to Laban, “Give me my wife that I may go in to her, for my time is completed.”  So Laban gathered together all the people of the place and made a feast.  But in the evening he took his daughter Leah and brought her to Jacob, and he went in to her.  (Laban gave his female servant Zilpah to his daughter Leah to be her servant.)  And in the morning, behold, it was Leah! And Jacob said to Laban, “What is this you have done to me? Did I not serve with you for Rachel? Why then have you deceived me?”  Laban said, “It is not so done in our country, to give the younger before the firstborn.  Complete the week of this one, and we will give you the other also in return for serving me another seven years.”  Jacob did so, and completed her week. Then Laban gave him his daughter Rachel to be his wife.  (Laban gave his female servant Bilhah to his daughter Rachel to be her servant.)  So Jacob went in to Rachel also, and he loved Rachel more than Leah, and served Laban for another seven years. (ESV)
Looking into Eternity? or Living into Eternity?
Take some time today, tomorrow, and Saturday and read the passage for this upcoming Sunday as we kickoff our 6-week series entitled “Wrestling with God”.
Genesis 27:18 – 40 “The Blessing of being Blessed”
 So he went in to his father and said, “My father.” And he said, “Here I am. Who are you, my son?”  Jacob said to his father, “I am Esau your firstborn. I have done as you told me; now sit up and eat of my game, that your soul may bless me.”  But Isaac said to his son, “How is it that you have found it so quickly, my son?” He answered, “Because the LORD your God granted me success.”  Then Isaac said to Jacob, “Please come near, that I may feel you, my son, to know whether you are really my son Esau or not.”  So Jacob went near to Isaac his father, who felt him and said, “The voice is Jacob’s voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.”  And he did not recognize him, because his hands were hairy like his brother Esau’s hands. So he blessed him.  He said, “Are you really my son Esau?” He answered, “I am.”  Then he said, “Bring it near to me, that I may eat of my son’s game and bless you.” So he brought it near to him, and he ate; and he brought him wine, and he drank.
 Then his father Isaac said to him, “Come near and kiss me, my son.”  So he came near and kissed him. And Isaac smelled the smell of his garments and blessed him and said,
“See, the smell of my son is as the smell of a field that the LORD has blessed!  May God give you of the dew of heaven and of the fatness of the earth and plenty of grain and wine.  Let peoples serve you, and nations bow down to you. Be lord over your brothers, and may your mother’s sons bow down to you. Cursed be everyone who curses you, and blessed be everyone who blesses you!”
 As soon as Isaac had finished blessing Jacob, when Jacob had scarcely gone out from the presence of Isaac his father, Esau his brother came in from his hunting.  He also prepared delicious food and brought it to his father. And he said to his father, “Let my father arise and eat of his son’s game, that you may bless me.”  His father Isaac said to him, “Who are you?” He answered, “I am your son, your firstborn, Esau.”  Then Isaac trembled very violently and said, “Who was it then that hunted game and brought it to me, and I ate it all before you came, and I have blessed him? Yes, and he shall be blessed.”  As soon as Esau heard the words of his father, he cried out with an exceedingly great and bitter cry and said to his father, “Bless me, even me also, O my father!”  But he said, “Your brother came deceitfully, and he has taken away your blessing.”  Esau said, “Is he not rightly named Jacob? For he has cheated me these two times. He took away my birthright, and behold, now he has taken away my blessing.” Then he said, “Have you not reserved a blessing for me?”  Isaac answered and said to Esau, “Behold, I have made him lord over you, and all his brothers I have given to him for servants, and with grain and wine I have sustained him. What then can I do for you, my son?”  Esau said to his father, “Have you but one blessing, my father? Bless me, even me also, O my father.” And Esau lifted up his voice and wept.
 Then Isaac his father answered and said to him:
“Behold, away from the fatness of the earth shall your dwelling be, and away from the dew of heaven on high.  By your sword you shall live, and you shall serve your brother; but when you grow restless you shall break his yoke from your neck.” (ESV)
Take some time today, tomorrow, and Saturday (every day) and read the passage for this upcoming Vacation day on Sunday!
Ask the Lord to reveal what He would have for you as you gather with the Christ Church community this Sunday!
Mark 2:23–28 “The Healthy Christian”
 One Sabbath he was going through the grainfields, and as they made their way, his disciples began to pluck heads of grain.  And the Pharisees were saying to him, “Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath?”  And he said to them, “Have you never read what David did, when he was in need and was hungry, he and those who were with him:  how he entered the house of God, in the time of Abiathar the high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and also gave it to those who were with him?”  And he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.  So the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath.” (ESV)