Wednesday (6/24/20)

Read Genesis 29-30

I love the characters in Genesis that we get to see for many chapters. We can see their faith grow and develop just as ours does. OK, it is just me or is Genesis 29:25 a crack up verse… “When morning came, there was Leah.” Like he hadn’t noticed who was in bed with him?! What a drama we are reading about! It’s good to have our focus on seeing faith in our characters. Or a lack of faith that can teach us about ourselves.

  • Where do you see Jacob trusting in himself instead of his God?
  • What about Leah? What do we learn about her? What about Rachel?
  • In their relationships and their responses, where would you long to see a different more faith-filled response?
  • Both of the women seem to see children and Jacob as the fulfiller of their dreams and needs. We all have needs for security, acceptance, and love. The trouble comes when we seek to get those needs met in ways that are either outright sin, or sneakier sin/control/manipulation. Where do you see this potential trouble in your own life?

Tuesday (6/23/20)

Read Genesis 27-28

The blessing that they were seeking is one that would transfer leadership of the clan to the next generation (Zondervan’s Bible Commentary). The administrator (usually the firstborn) would preside over family events as well as determine the timing and division of the inheritance. Though Esau had earlier (chapter 25) traded away his birthright (for a bowl of stew), he could retain control of the estate through this blessing. The blessing would also be a proclamation of destiny for the sons. It was believed to be binding once the words were spoken – hence Isaac could not take them back even when it was revealed that he had been tricked.

What we believe always gets worked out in what we do. Belief precedes behavior. We can say all day long that we believe and trust in God, but if we manipulate, control, lay down in self pity we reveal much more about where our trust lays.

Each of the players in this story display faith and disbelief along the way. We are no different than they are. Let’s look at each character and see what their actions reveal to us.

On a piece of paper write out when each of these people demonstrated faith and when they demonstrated disbelief:

  • Jacob
  • Esau
  • Rebekah
  • Isaac

Reflect on your actions over the past 24 hours and write down when you demonstrated faith and/or disbelief.

Jesus asks a man in the gospels if he believes that He (Jesus) can heal his son. The man replies, “I do believe, help me with my unbelief.” Spend some time asking the Holy Spirit to show you areas of disbelief, areas where you are trying to control outcomes, as well as areas where you are growing in trust.

Monday (6/22/20)

Read Genesis 26 (refer to Genesis 20)

  • Describe the faith you see in Isaac as evidenced here.
  • Describe a time in your life recently when you responded to a situation in great faith.
  • Describe a time when you responded with doubt or hedged your bets.
  • What determines how you will respond? How can you grow in responding in faith?

Sunday (6/21/20)

Today is a day for grace! Spend time praying, sitting and enjoying the Father’s presence, or catch up in the devos!

Relax and breathe deeply!

Below is the link to watch the second part of Genesis: Chapters 12-50 from the Bible Project.

Saturday (6/20/20)

Read Genesis 24-25:11

The characters in this chapter are so amazing to me, each in their own story. Not everyone marries, but if we do, God is still very concerned about the person we choose. Even our closest friends are important choices as these people influence us greatly.

  • Why do you think Abraham is so concerned about who Isaac is going to marry?

We are going to look at each character and how they demonstrate their faith through their actions. James taught us this spring that our faith is proved genuine by our actions – not by our words. How do you see faith in each of the characters below:

  • Abraham?
  • In the servant?
  • In Rebekah?
  • In Isaac?

Abraham is very specific in his request of the Lord. Jesus, in Mark 10:46-52, also asks this man to be specific about his request. Why do you think it is valuable to speak specifically in our requests to God when we pray for ourselves as well as for others?

Friday (6/19/20)

Read Genesis 22

Ahhhh – this is a hard to read story.

  • What do you discover about Abraham in this chapter?
  • Moriah would be a three day journey. Isaac was old enough to carry wood for the fire and ask questions (and old enough to run away when he realized that he was the sacrifice). What can you see in his character during this scene?
  • In verse 8 the Hebrew word for “will provide” is raah which literally means “to see to” or “to attend to”. From Hebrews 11:17-19, what can we speculate was going on in Abraham’s head?
  • Where do you need God to provide today? Do you believe that He will provide? What has grown this faith in you?

Thursday (6/18/20)

Read Genesis 21

I always think it’s funny that verse 2 highlights Abraham’s old age when Sarah is the one who gave birth well into her old age!

  • The name Isaac means “he laughs.” Why is this appropriate for them?
  • What does the birth of Isaac teach us about God?

Hagar had been given to Sarah as her maid and therefore Sarah could dismiss her. But because Sarah had given her to Abraham and she bore a son to him, she was elevated to the status of a wife and sending her away would be similar to divorcing her, although she would gain her freedom.

  • What do you learn about Abraham’s character throughout this sending away?
  • Hagar is afraid. Think about what makes you afraid. As you sit and think about what is causing the fear, where is God in the midst of the story?