Then he and the men who were with him ate and drank and spent the night there. When they got up the next morning, he said, “Send me on my way to my master.” 55 But her brother and her mother replied, “Let the young woman remain with us ten days or so; then you may go.” 56 But he said to them, “Do not detain me, now that the LORD has granted success to my journey. Send me on my way so I may go to my master.” 57 Then they said, “Let’s call the young woman and ask her about it.” 58 So they called Rebekah and asked her, “Will you go with this man?” “I will go,” she said. (Genesis 24:54-58 NIV)
I started reading through the Bible several days ago. I decided to read it straight through and found a reading plan to guide me. I’m looking forward to seeing what I discover.
The main story in today’s section was the search for a bride for Isaac. This was the ultimate arranged marriage. Abraham identifies the people, his family, from which the bride will come. The servant who is sent on the mission prays that God will provide a clear sign that he has found the right woman. The sign is fulfilled, and Rebekah is identified as Isaac’s bride.
Later in the story we’ll discover that Rebekah’s brother Laban is a man who is willing to deceive to get his way. In this story he tries to delay the departure of Abraham’s servant. We’re not told why, but the responses of the servant and Rebekah are consistent.
The servant is anxious to return home and complete his mission. This man was focused. Many servants might have accepted the invitation to stay and enjoy the hospitality provided by Laban. Not this servant, he is not going to let anything distract him from the commitment he had made to Abraham. I am easily distracted. I blame it on declining memory, but the truth is that if I had this servant’s desire to keep my commitment, I would find a way to do what I promised to do.
Rebekah’s response is the one that really fascinates me. She is living with her brother and apparently has some level of independence. She is not commanded to go with the servant, but instead is offered the option. In one day, her world turns upside down. I think she must have had some faith in God. The servant makes his relationship with God very clear as he worships and praises God at every step through this story. He invites Rebekah to go and without hesitation she goes. This requires an incredible level of trust. As a result, she becomes the mother of Israel.
What is God inviting you to do? Where is God calling you to go? If you’re not going, what is holding you back?
For my grandchildren:
When God calls you to go, go.