A Work in Progress

John Koedyker

READ : Genesis 28:10-22

Then Jacob woke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place—and I did not know it!” (v. 16)

Up until this point, Genesis has portrayed Jacob in a rather negative light. We see that he is a liar, a deceiver, a supplanter—an altogether self-centered individual. We have heard nothing about Jacob’s faith or his relationship with God. We have no reason to think of him as a godly person.

In his encounter with God at Bethel, however, we see the beginning of a kind of spiritual awakening in Jacob’s life. Certainly Jacob was not looking for God. It is more a case of God tracking down Jacob. From his reaction after his vision, we get the sense that Jacob, who has pretty much been going along doing his own thing, all of a sudden realizes, “There is a God after all!”

Someone once said to me that Christians need the sign “Under Construction” hung around our necks. God isn’t finished with us yet. That’s a good thing because most of us have quite a ways to go. God wasn’t finished with Jacob either. Jacob, ever the wheeler-dealer, sounds a bit like he is even bargaining with God at Bethel. But, like all of us, he was a work in progress.


Thank you, Father, for reaching out to us just as we are. Amen.