Lift Your Eyes

Forty | Devotion #1: Lift Your Eyes
Pastor Joshua Combs

Setting aside all of the cultural contexts of the Ancient Near East for a brief moment, simply put, we meet a man in Genesis chapter 24 who is looking for a wife. Strangely, he is looking for a wife for his boss’ son, Isaac. I am sure as the son of the extravagantly wealthy Abraham, Isaac had had many ladies (with their father’s prodding) vying for his affection and hand in marriage. Marrying Isaac would have equaled wealth, servants, and great herds. But Isaac had submitted to his father, who had dispatched the head of his household to the land of Mesopotamia in the city of Nahor at the well. The sun was beginning to set, so the scorching heat began to subside, and that was the time when the women of the city would come to the well to draw water. The servant knew this was a great place to meet all of the ladies of the city and Lord willing, find a bride for Isaac. The servant, however, does not simply rely on his own understanding or knowledge but begins to pray. The specificity and boldness of this prayer in inspiring. Abraham’s servant realizes that without the Lord’s blessing, this could be a waste of a trip.  As he is finishing his prayer, Genesis 24:15 says, “Before he had finished speaking, behold, Rebekah…”

The servant had yet to finish praying, and the Lord was answering. As we pray, we must never forget that we are approaching a royal throne. “Let us then with confidence,” the writer of Hebrews states, “draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16). Our prayers need not be small or timid. We approach God’s throne, not as uninvited, intruding guests, but children approaching our Father who has repeatedly invited us to test the limits of His power, the vastness of His resources, and the depth of His love.

As a secondary application and challenge, we see a biblical framework for finding a wife or a husband. Here are a few guidelines we see here in the Scripture:

1. Honor your parents/spiritual leaders (24:1-11)
2. Pray – Ask God to direct your steps (24:12-14)
3. Look for someone with a servant’s heart (24:14-27)
4. It is ok to look for someone you think is beautiful (24:16)
5. Watch for consistency in the person’s life (24:21)
6. Honor their family (24:22-53)
7. Do not force it (24:58)

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