[reprinted from July 11, 2011]
One day, Jacob was cooking some stew, when Esau came home hungry and said, “I’m starving to death! Give me some of that red stew right now!” That’s how Esau got the name “Edom.” Jacob replied, “Sell me your rights as the first-born son.” “I’m about to die,” Esau answered. “What good will those rights do me?”
But Jacob said, “Promise me your birthrights, here and now!” And that’s what Esau did. Jacob then gave Esau some bread and some of the bean stew, and when Esau had finished eating and drinking, he just got up and left, showing how little he thought of his rights as the first-born. Genesis 25:29-34 (CEV)
“how little he thought.” As I look back on what these devotions and all the other personal time that God and I spend together have been saying to me – the thread that I see is “priorities.” It isn’t any surprise actually. Every day of my life, I make decisions based on priorities. How will I spend my time. To whom and what will I give the finite amount of time I have. What is important to me?
No matter how much a parent may tell a child, “I love you,” if the parent does not give of their time and attention, the child knows that the parent’s love is questionable. If the parent doesn’t put the needs of the child before their own, the child receives that message of what is really important to the parent.
Esau chose to meet his immediate needs. He wasn’t going to literally “starve.” He was hungry so he decided food was more important than his birthright. Oh, how often I have made that same decision. Chose food instead of _____. Yes, Jacob was a manipulative little twirp but if Esau had sought wisdom before making a choice, Jacob could not have tempted him with a bowl of bean soup.
God promises me wisdom. As much as I need. His wisdom will not run out. Jesus promised that the Spirit would remind me of Jesus’ words (John 14:25-26). No matter what the circumstance, I have a Helper. I have whatever I need to make good choices, to set good priorities.
Then he taught them many things by using stories. He said: A farmer went out to scatter seed in a field. While the farmer was scattering the seed, some of it fell… Matthew 13:3-4 (CEV)
Jesus taught using stories that the people of the time could relate to. Maybe it’s because I’m a farm girl at heart but I get these stories, too. I see “priorities” in this passage also.
Jesus said that my “job” as His disciple is to go and make disciples, teaching them all that He has taught me (Matthew 28). God sows the seeds into lives. People aren’t all sitting around in a church, ready and willing to hear God and obey Him. They are out in their world with terrible events happening, seductive distractions, and their own willful, rebellious spirits keeping them from hearing and accepting God’s words. As a disciple-maker, it is my job to break up the hard ground, chop down the weeds, and cut out the thorns. With the guidance of God’s Spirit, I am given opportunities to share and teach others about who and what has changed my life.
When the LORD calls me home, what will be my legacy? What footprints will I leave behind? Will it be about the “stuff” I have? Will it be how many books that I was a part of publishing that made money? Or will it about about how many disciples love Jesus just because I was willing to be used by Him?
History Maker written by Martin Smith &sung by Lindell Cooley