Tenacious Pursuit…

“O God, I have tasted Thy goodness, and it has both satisfied me and made me thirsty for more.
I am painfully conscious of my need of further grace.
I am ashamed of my lack of desire.
O God, the Triune God, I want to want Thee; I long to be filled with longing;
I thirst to be made more thirsty still.
Show me Thy glory, I pray Thee, that so I may know Thee indeed.
Begin in mercy a new work of love within me.
Say to my soul, “Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.”
Then give me grace to rise and follow Thee up from this misty lowland where I have wandered so long.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen” (The Pursuit of God, A.W. Tozer).

This is the prayer of my heart and I am not ready to let go… not ready to let the angel go, despite already having received the blessing… (Genesis 32: 24-30). Jacob wrestling with an “Angel” is such an amazing story.

“Very early in the morning, a great while before day, Jacob had helped his wives and his children over the river, and he desired to be private, and was left alone, that he might again more fully spread his cares and fears before God in prayer… While Jacob was earnest in prayer, stirring up himself to take hold of God, an angel takes hold on him” (Henry).

“We are told by the prophet, (Hosea 12:4) how Jacob wrestled: he wept, and made supplication; prayers and tears were his weapons” (Henry). It was not only a physical wrestling match, but a spiritual one, fueled by holy desire.

What was the outcome? Though the struggle continued long, Jacob kept his ground and prevailed. “It was not in his own strength that Jacob wrestled, nor by his own strength that he prevailed, but in and by strength derived from Heaven. Job illustrates this (Job 23:6), Will he plead against me with his great power? No (had the angel done so, Jacob had been crushed), but he will put strength in me; and by that strength Jacob had power over the angel” (Henry).

We cannot prevail against God unless God wills it by giving us His strength to do so. It is his Spirit that intercedes in us, and helps our infirmities, (Romans 8:26). The angel dislocated Jacob’s thigh, to show him what he could do, and that it was God he was wrestling with, for no man could disjoint his thigh with a touch. Some think that Jacob felt little or no pain from this hurt; it is probable that he did not, for he did not so much as halt till the struggle was over (Genesis 32:31), and, if so, this was an evidence of a divine touch indeed, which wounded and healed at the same time. Jacob prevailed, and yet had his thigh put out (Henry).

Oh Church, where is our fervor? Where is the fire of tenacious pursuit? We ought to be in constant prayer, always to pray and not to faint, but we give up before we ever take it to the mat.

Triune God,
We are ashamed of our lack of desire for you. I stand ashamed. Cleanse us with your holy flame. Cleanse me. We are in desperately in need your grace. Only you can fill us with longing… longing for You.

Make us into a team of wrestling believers God, willing to struggle until we prevail, even at the point of hurt… [For] “your grace is all we need, for Your power is greatest when we are weak… For when we are weak, then we are strong” (2 Corinthians 12: 9; 10).

Prepare us… your Church to receive your unending grace and mercy. Please, show us you’re shikinah glory. Glory, not for ourselves… selfishly horded, but the glory to begin in mercy, a new work of love for others, glory for and of Your kingdom.

Abba Father, we wait in hope for your renewal so that we may leave the misty lowlands and soar as on eagles wings to you (Isaiah 40:31). And let it begin with me… Amen.

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