The mud of Jabbok – know it?

By Dave Henning / December 3, 2023

“God let Jacob fight until it appeared Jacob was in control.  Then, with one touch, God dislocated the hip. . . .  The hip is the largest weight-bearing joint in the human body, and it engages some of the strongest muscles.  The message of the dislocation? ‘ You aren’t as strong as you think you are.  Rely on me!’  Do you know the mud of Jabbok?  I do.”- Max Lucado

“That same night [Jacob] arose and took his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven children, and crossed the ford of the Jabbok.  He took them and sent them across the stream. . . .  And Jacob was left alone.”- Genesis 32:22-24 (ESV)

Max Lucado concludes Chapter 8 of God Never Gives Up on You as he asserts that Jacob at Jabbok warrants a place in the great hall of holy moments.  Most significantly, Pastor Lucado observes, God let Jacob fight until it appeared Jacob held the upper hand.  Then, God dislocated his hip with one touch.

In addition, Max defines your Jabbok as:

  • the moment in which God brings you face-to-face with yourself — and you don’t like what you see.
  • when you exert all your strength, only to find that your strength fails to give you what you need.
  • a single touch on the hip that, like Jacob, brings you to your knees.
  • the moment, or especially in that moment, God dispenses grace.

In conclusion, Pastor Lucado underscores:

“Israel means ‘God fights’ or God strives.’  The name celebrated, and celebrates, God’s power and loyalty.  The old Jacob fought for himself.  The old Jacob relied on his wits, trickery, and fast feet.  Jacob, himself, took care of himself.  The new Jacob had a new source of power: God.  From this day forward each introduction would be a reminder of God’s presence. ‘Hello, my name is God fights’. . . .

His old name reflected his old self.  His new name reflected his new strength.”

Today’s question: Like Max, do you know the mud of Jabbok?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Happy to sidestep the encounter?”?

About the author

Dave Henning

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